Another Note about Dichterwahnsinn

Badiou also says that poetry is something that discovers infinite power and potential within language, a ressource of power that is infinite and transcends and shatters any possible contour. I have spoken about the necessity to gain access to the „deep structure“ of literature – which means: the Experimentierfeld ihrer Möglichkeiten (the field of experimentation concerning all the possibilities inherent in literature) – that is the „deep structure“ of literature!  As is also widely known, my approach to literature has strong affinity with the associative and paradoxical logic of dreams. Freud, if I am correct, says that poetry/literature and dreams are practically identical. If we take this together you easily sense that literature and poetry and art is something that is inherently abysmal. That is good, because it negates gravity (as concerns the usual experience) and makes you levitate and drift; that is bad because it negates gravity (as concerns the usual experience) because boundary and solidity evaporate and you´re in a free fall (with the prospect of a probably devastating landing as it suddenly obviously affirms gravity). There is nothing that seems truly solid and secure when you do poetry. You´re easily disoriented and you´re alone. Therein, poetry again resembles madness and you again approach so-called Dichterwahnsinn. Wahnsinn means incoherent identity of signifier and signified and the enterprise of poetry – i.e. to extend the relationship between the signifier and the signified – makes you easily feel revoving between super-sanity and insanity. Art and poetry are subjective truths. If the subjective truth becomes of objective importance, the artwork finds solidity in itself and it is ereted by its own inner strength and stability. The romantic content becomes classic. The romantic aspect means abysmal depth, infinite passion and infinite jest; the classic aspect means pacification of passion, staring into a flat, tamed abyss with tranquil eye, the Apollonian. The romantic content and style becomes a new classicism, in the case of success. End of story.

If we take this to further extremes you may again remember Kafka who, at some point of his career, said that he wouldn´t be interested in mastering poetry and achieving some ideal of classicist mastery over literature and art anymore, but that his sole interest would be to lift „the world into the pure, the real and the  invariable“ („die Welt ins Reine, Wahre, Unveränderliche zu heben“). Indeed, that is the end beyond the (classicist) end of art and any intellectual and spiritual endeavour. Some people, including Kafka, are able to achieve such a state of mind, that is commonly referred to as Satori or the transition/transgression of the (fundamental) phantasma. Rumi says that for him that seeks God, it is impossible to find God. Since in the moment you find God, you will lose yourself in God. Like a river that enters the ocean. Or grain in the soil that becomes a plant. Correspondingly, if you lift the world into the pure, the real and the invariable, you will get „lost“ into the world, a swimmer in the world ocean (who is, however, not incompetend or crazy, but able to swim), the poet´s frenzy/insanity turns into super sanity. The contours of the world and the contour of your subjectivity become the same. And that is what you have in the works of Kafka. Since the world is, to a considerable degree, mad and helpless, you will become, to some considerable degree, mad and helpless as well. From frenzy there is no absolute escape since it is an inherent aspect of the world. However, there is a considerable difference between super sanity and insanity. I wish you a Merry Christmas, not least also to all the unbelievers.


Occasional Note about Dichterwahnsinn