Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: http://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.731378
Title: Stimmung and modernity : the aesthetic philosophy of mood in Dostoevsky, Beckett and Bernhard
Author: Breidenbach, Birgit
ISNI:       0000 0004 6496 4060
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2017
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Abstract:
This study investigates how the aesthetic concept of Stimmung [‘mood’ or ‘attunement’] informs the affective and experiential dimension of the reading process through the lens of modern philosophy and literature. It seeks to establish ‘mood’ as a key concept in literary theory and to outline the modes and articulations of this aesthetic phenomenon as an integral part of the modern discourse on existentialism and aesthetics. Modernity, I propose, fundamentally redefined Stimmung as an intersubjective phenomenon, and has sparked a sustained exploration of this concept in pivotal philosophical and literary texts of the modern age. The study first examines the conceptual history of this term and its musical origin to then focus on Martin Heidegger’s redefinition of attunement as a crucial aspect of his ontology. From these considerations, a phenomenological theory of Stimmung in literature is developed, in which the reading process is defined through the attunement between text and reader. I subsequently further refine this notion by analysing the central role of Stimmung in the narrative fiction of three key authors of modern literature: Fyodor Dostoevsky, Samuel Beckett and Thomas Bernhard. What these readings demonstrate is a significant shift towards an aesthetic of intensity and immediacy, in which the experience of the reading process takes centre stage. Stimmung as an attunement between text and reader uncovers the dynamic relationality of aesthetic reception, and is inextricably connected to dominant modes of conceptualising existence and experience in the modern age. Ultimately, I demonstrate how the specific modern configuration of Stimmung answers to a sense of crisis and vicissitude that aesthetic modernity has transformed into a mood in its own right.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: University of Warwick ; Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.731378  DOI: Not available
Keywords: PN Literature (General)
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