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TSE  May 2001

TSE May 2001

Subject:

Re: memory (and dreams) in TWL

From:

"Rickard Parker" <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Sun, 20 May 2001 18:20:43 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (146 lines)

Excuse me for not really continuing the **discussion** of memory
in TWL but I will send along some more information.

On dreams: I just picked up Gerad de Nerval's Aurelia the other day and
skimmed the first few pages. Nerval was very much into dreams and in
Aurelia is supposed to discuss them in great detail.  Aurelia is the
name that he gives to a love that he lost, Jenny Colon.  Anyway, very
early on Nerval brings up the ivory and horned gates that I believe that
Eliot had in one of his drafts to TWL.  If so then Eliot was at least
thinking of dreams when writing TWL.


Gunnar Jauch wrote:

> Thank you for the Hesse quote -- where is it from?

J.P Earls also asked.  Let me cheat a bit and do some more cut and pastes
from my web site.  You have to dig around a bit to get information like this
but I'm hoping that is part of the fun.  I've considered making a page of
links to make getting the information a little easier but I still like the
"Exploring The Waste Land" idea better.  If you search you might end up
finding something new.

This is not where I got the translation but perhaps some may be interested
in this book (I posted this URL not too long ago)
    http://www.gss.ucsb.edu/projects/hesse/publications/kaemp.html

At my web site:

In his note to line 366 Eliot has directed us to Hermann Hesse's book
Blick ins Chaos (In Sight of Chaos or A Glimspe of Chaos.) Eliot quotes
from the last paragraph of Hesse's essay The Brothers Karamazov, or The
Decline of Europe.

"Half of Europe, at least half of Eastern Europe is already on the road
to chaos, moving in a drunken state in holy delusion along the abyss and
singing also, singing intoxicated and hymn-like like Dmitri Karamasoff
sang. The common man laughs about the songs and is offended, the saint
and the prophet are listening in tears."

In the essay Hesse wrote a few paragraphs each for a number of loosely
connected thoughts about the future of Europe. He contrasted European
culture with the culture of Asiatic Russia as examplified by the
characters in Fyodor Dostoevsky's novel The Brothers Karamazov.

Here you can read the two paragraphs that make up Hesse's concluding
thought. [A link brings you to a page with:]

I have said that Dostoevsky is really not a writer, or is one only
incidentally. I have called him a prophet. Hard to say what this really
means-a prophet! It strikes me as something like this: a prophet is a
sick man, just as Dostoevsky vas really a hysteric, almost an epileptic.
A prophet is an invalid of the sort who has lost the healthy, sound,
beneficent instinct of self-preservation, which is the essence of all
middle-class virtues. There must not be many of these men, otherwise the
world would go to pieces. This sort of sick man whether he is called
Dostoevsky or Karamazov, has that strange, secret, morbid, divine
capability, the possible existence of which Asiatics honor in every
madman. He is a manic, he is a seer. This means that in him a people, a
nation, or a section of the world has developed an organ, an antenna, a
rare, especially sensitive, noble, vulnerable organ that others do not
have, which in the case of all the rest, for their health and happiness,
has remained vestigial. This antenna, this prophetic sense of touch, is
not to be coarsely understood as a silly sort of telepathy or magic
trick, although the gift can quite well manifest itself in these
disconcerting forms. Rather the "invalid" of this sort transposes the
events of his own soul into general terms applicable to mankind.
Everyone has visions, everyone has imaginings, everyone has dreams. And
every vision, every dream, every thought and inspiration a person has,
may, on the way from the unconscious to consciousness, permit of a
thousand different interpretations, each one of which may be right. The
seer and prophet does not interpret his visions personally, the
nightmare that presses upon him does not speak to him of personal
illness, of his own death, but rather of the larger whole as whose
organ, whose antenna, he lives. This whole may be a family, a party, a
nation, it can as well be all mankind.

In Dostoevsky's soul what we usually call hysteria, a certain illness
and openness to suffering, has served mankind as an organ, an indicator,
a barometer. Mankind is on the point of taking notice. Already half of
Europe, at least half of eastern Europe, is on the road to chaos;
intoxicated with a divine madness it makes its way along the edge of the
abyss and sings, sings drunken hymns the way Dmitri Karamazov sang. The
citizen laughs indignantly at these songs, the holy man and seer listens
to them with tears.



The actual source of translated text [note that this is not the "Hudson"
(an alias) translation from the 1922 Dial:]

My Belief by Hermann Hesse.

Edited, and with an introduction, by Theodore Ziolkowski. Translated by
Denver Lindley.

Farrar, Straus and Giroux
19 Union Square West
New York, NY 10003


Library of Congress catalog card number: 72-84782
ISBN 0-374-21666-5
Published simultaneously in Canada by Doubleday Canada Ltd., Toronto



>From the dust jacket:

It is a fact of literary history that T.S. Eliot attempted to spread the
reputation of Hesse's book of essays "Blick ins Chaos" (In Sight of
Chaos) by citing it in his notes on "The Waste Land." Yet Eliot's effort
obviously failed, for fifty years later Hesse the essayist is still
unknown in English.

My Belief fills a conspicuous gap by presenting in a single volume all
of Hesse's most important essays. The three categories in which his
considerable body of essayistic writings can be loosely
arranged--literary criticism, personal credo, criticism of society--are
all represented, from the tentative notes entitled "At Year's End"
(1904) to the letter "Joseph Knecht to Carlo Ferromonte" (1961). It
should be understood, however, that the lines separating these three
rough categories are far from definite; for Hesse, the realms of life
and art are so closely intertwined that any discourse beginning in one
leads inevitably to the other.

In the essays of the twenties and thirties, Hesse is overtly concerned
with opposition to the accepted state of the world and with expressing
his rebellion against conventional values. But in his late
essays--virtually the only form he practiced for the last twenty years
of his life--we find few concessions to popular concerns of the moment.
At peace with himself, Hesse writes only for those readers who wish to
join him on his own terrain. These contemplations often begin as an idyl
of childhood or a reverie in a garden, but soon stray to such compelling
issues as the quest for personal identity, moral responsibility, and the
search for unity in a world that has become fragmented.

In these writings we are directly exposed to the beliefs concerning life
and art that underlie Hesse's major fictions-a body of work that has
recently seized the imagination of a new generation of readers.





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