Negative Capability -- a dramatic virtue discerned by Keats in Shakespeare --
he (Shakespeare) had the capability to impersonate (identify with) an Iago as well an Imogen, a Shylock as well as a Portia, an Edgar as well as an Edmund. This capability did not obliterate his own individual self/identity or his capability to be himself. But, as TSE observed, only a man who has a personality knows how to transcend it and be impersonal.
 
                                          Except for the point, the still point,
    There would be no dance, and there is only the dance.
 
Likewise, only a man (I may be excused for using the generic term) who knows his language (has control over his linguistic skills) is competent enough to take liberties with his language. My admiration of Peter's elucidation was limited to this aspect only. Maybe both of you converge on this point.
 
Now where have I praised 'his commitment to not "knowing" any particular "language" that is consistent' ?
 
Regards.
 
~ CR


Nancy Gish <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
As it happens, that is not what "negative capability is about." Nor is
Eliot's theory of impersonality, though I fail to see how it is combined
with "control." But as you seem to be completely in agreement with
Tabitha and me and contradicting Peter since you focus on the "liberty"
with language of "a man" who "knows" it, why are you praising his
commitment to not "knowing" any particular "language" that is
consistent? "Taking liberties" with something already there is, of
course, the point, minus the assumption of language being a male
preserve.
Nancy

>>> [log in to unmask] 04/08/06 9:18 AM >>>
I'm also reminded of Keats' "Negative Capability"
in the context of Shakespeare. It's not a case of
one's being a turncoat, a scarecrow that turns with
every wind. Only a man who knows his language
can take liberties with the language.

Thanks again.

~ CR



cr mittal <[log in to unmask]>wrote:
Thanks, Peter, for your superb elucidation of
"mind-forged manacles" vis-a-vis spellings.
Your closing observation

Is there a fear of loss of power through loss of control here?
Dare we let ordinary people take back the language for themselves?
Guess what? It doesn't matter. They're doing it anyway.

reminds me of TSE's concept of Impersonality/Control.

Regards.

~ CR




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