Contagion: Sexuality, Disease, and Death in German Idealism by David F. Krell

By David F. Krell

"Krell writes right here with a brilliance of favor that few different philosophers can match." -- John SallisAlthough the Romantic Age is mostly regarded as idealizing nature because the resource of beginning, existence, and creativity, David Farrell Krell specializes in the preoccupation of 3 key German Romantic thinkers -- Novalis, Schelling, and Hegel -- with nature's damaging powers -- contagion, sickness, and dying.

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Extra info for Contagion: Sexuality, Disease, and Death in German Idealism and Romanticism (Studies in Continental Thought)

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Pleasure is life. Unpleasure is the means to pleasure, as death is the means to life. . Anastomosis of discursive individuals" (2: 350). Another note from the Universal Sketchbook observes the similarity between learning and eating: ''Thus learning is quite similar to eatingand a priori knowing is satietya nourishing without eating" (2: 685). For Novalis, however, the expansive force, the drive to completion or supplementation, is as much palpation as it is ingestionno matter what Schlegel's little Wilhelmine may have insisted.

The eyes are the higher pair of siblings to the lips. They close and open a holier grotto than the mouth. The ears are the serpent that hungrily swallows whatever the will-o'-the-wisps let fall. Mouth and eyes have a similar form. The lashes are the lips. The eyeball is the tongue and the gums, the pupil is the gorge. The nose is the mouth's brow, and the brow is the nose of the eyes. Each eye has a cheekbone as its chin. (Das allgemeine Brouillon; 2: 557) Tongue and lipsthese essential elements of any system of the mouth, including that of Novalis's Mr.

And then, are flesh and blood in fact so repulsive and base? Truly, there is more than gold and diamonds here, and the time is not far off when one will have a more elevated concept of the organic body. Who knows what a sublime symbol blood is? Precisely what is repulsive in its organic components is what allows us to conclude that there is something utterly sublime in them. We shiver before them, as though before ghosts, and with childish terror we sense in this bizarre mélange a mysterious world, which may turn out to be something like a woman we knew long ago.

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