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诗与道德心灵:论爱默生诗学的伦理维度

Poetry and the Moral Soul:The Ethical Dimension in Emerson's Poetics

ISBN:978-7-5203-7542-9

出版日期:2020-09

页数:313

字数:330.0千字

丛书名:《中国社会科学博士论文文库》

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引用量:1次

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在一般人的理解里,19世纪美国由爱默生发起的那场“超验主义”文学思潮注重抽象的灵性与个体直觉,主张超越经验与现实世界,从而达到一个理想的精神世界。然而,实际上,爱默生的超验主义诗学却具有强烈的实用色彩,这是因为,行动是将现实世界提升至理想世界的唯一方式,而伦理是这一过程中的关键因素。因此,对道德伦理的强调体现在爱默生超验主义诗学的各个方面。

这篇论文即从爱默生诗学的伦理维度出发,分别从诗人观、创作观、诗歌观、批评观这四方面重点分析了道德这一因素在爱默生诗学中的具体体现,并探讨了爱默生在诗学观中如此强调道德的现实与理论原因。从现实的层面而言,爱默生希望道德是医治美国发展失衡的良药,他的写作和演讲都是他试图通过对道德的强调去唤醒美国道德心灵的努力;从理论的层面而言,道德是爱默生维系个体、社会、宇宙间平衡和睦的重要法则,是实现其宇宙道德统一的核心。

19世纪初的美国,社会物欲横流,个体精神贫乏。爱默生相信人内心的道德情感,并且将人类内心的道德情感与宇宙的道德法则联系起来。在他偏重伦理的诗学形成过程中,古典诗学传统、基督教诗学传统以及东方思想中的诗学传统皆对他产生过重要影响。

诗人是有特殊才能的个体,在爱默生的文本中,诗人具有特殊的意义。爱默生所指的诗人,不是通常意义上的作诗吟诗者,而是那些能与天地沟通,连接起自然和精神的思想者。从历史的角度看,诗人是时代的道德担当,是道德人格的典范。而且,诗人站在宇宙的中心,是一个完整的人。诗人还是先知和预言家,诗人能够宣布人们未曾预见到的事,诗人还能通过自己的描绘,改变这个世界,成为世界的解放之神。

诗人解读象征的过程也就是诗歌创作的过程,这个过程有三个阶段:道德的感知、象征的语言、有机的形式,伦理的标准也体现在每一个阶段。在第一个阶段道德感知中,诗人需要处理好的问题包括:理性与感性、直觉与灵感、想象;在第二阶段象征的语言中,诗人需要仔细斟酌字词的选择,注意语言的象征特性;在第三阶段有机的形式中,诗人需要达到三方面的有机:语言的有机、过程的有机、结构的有机。这三个阶段构成了创作过程中完整的统一。

诗歌,作为诗人对真理的记录,它的主要目的是记录诗人在自然象征中发现的道德真理。爱默生并没有将诗歌局限为狭隘的押韵文,在他看来,诗歌的跨学科融合更有利于诗歌实现目的。在诗歌与哲学的关系上,爱默生接续了欧洲浪漫主义思想家们的思考,力求将这二者统一起来;在诗歌与科学的关系上,爱默生糅合了启蒙思想家和浪漫思想家的观点,认为诗歌和科学互为补充,诗歌需要科学的理性,科学也需要诗歌的诗性;在诗歌与社会实践的关系上,爱默生一直高举道德改革的大旗,主张诗人和诗歌对社会改良的促进作用。爱默生的诗歌实践也从另一个侧面证明了他的诗歌理论。诗歌与哲学、诗歌与科学、诗歌与社会实践这三组各自形成了统一。而且,在道德真理的旗帜下,这三者互相之间又形成了一个大的统一。

在诗歌批评上,爱默生坚持一种道德审美的标准。道德的标准是为了求真求善,是一种超验的批评和伦理的批评;审美的标准是为了求美,是一种回归自然的批评。在爱默生的批评观中,道德的标准始终高于审美标准。

道德的基础是对个体神圣性的肯定;道德是自然的真理,自然是宇宙普遍精神——超灵——的外化,是精神世界的象征,超灵的至高至善至美的也就是自然的至高至善至美,因而自然中富含深刻的道德真理。综上,爱默生相信,心灵是道德的,它的目的是道德宇宙的统一。每个个体的身上都存在同一个心灵,通过宇宙间超灵的道德法则在自然中的显现,个体可以直觉到自己内在的道德情感,这是道德法则引导个体从孤立和原子化的状态向自然和宇宙的整体和统一的转变。

爱默生诗学思想和诗歌创作体现了独特的伦理价值和文化意义。从他的诗人观、创作观、诗歌观、批评观和宇宙观来看,爱默生本质上是一名古典的浪漫主义者。爱默生诗学的伦理思想既传承了美国和欧洲的道德和诗学传统,也对现代的美国文化和思想产生了深远的影响。

关键词:爱默生;诗学观;道德心灵;伦理;统一

Abstract

The aim of this paper is twofold: the first aim is to accomplish an analysis of the role of ethics in Emerson's poetics from four poetic perspectives,namely the concept of the poet,viewpoint on the creating process of the poet,understanding of the poetry and the criti cal standards of poetry; then based on this analysis,this paper tentatively come up with the proposal that the reason of Emerson's disproportionately emphasis on morality in his poetics is because of his ultimate pursuit of the cosmic unity.Morality is the key element in his cosmic unity and plays a significant role in keeping the harmony and unity among the individual,society and the cosmos.Therefore in his poetics,Emerson resorts to morality to achieve the effect of poetic unity,and,more importantly,to strike the Americans out of the mire of moral paralysis.

The United States in the early stage of 19th century presented avery worrying picture.The whole society was plagued by materialism and commercialism,the individual was suffering from spiritual poverty.Emerson hopes that morality is the healing medicine for the America went astray.Emerson believes in the innate“moral sentiment”,and he connects the moral sentiment inside with the moral laws of the universe outside.In his writings and lectures he endeavors to waken the moral souls of the Americans through the dissemination of morality.In the process of the formation of the morally-toned poetics,Emerson is deeply influenced by the Classi cal poetics tradition,the Christian poetics tradition,the Romantic poetics tradition,and the poetics tradition in the Oriental thoughts.

In Emerson's writings,the Poet connotes special meaning.The poet Emerson refers to,is not the ordinary versifier,but the intellectual who can commu nicate with heaven and earth,and links the natural the spiritual realm.Viewed from the cosmic order,the poet is the center of the universe,and is a complete man; viewed from the perspective of function,the poet is the prophet and the liberating God.The poet,standing in the center of the universe,sees the connection between nature and spirit,and uses symbolic language to express it,thus liberating the public from the oblivion and numbness.The poet,hence becomes the bridges between nature and spirit,and connects both.

The process of the poet interprets the symbol of nature is the process of creating,and it includes three stages: moral perception,symbolic language,and organic form,and all these three stages are ethi cal.In the first stage,moral perception,the poet should handle carefully with the issues like reason and understanding,intuition and inspiration,imagination; in the second stage,symbolic language,the poet should consider his choice of words,and aware of its symbolic nature; in the third stage,organic form,the poet should aim for organic in three levels,the organic of the language,the organic of the process and the organic of the structure.These three stages form the unity in the creating process.

Poetry,as the poet's record of truth,its main goal is to record the moral truth the poet discovered in nature.As with the poet,Emerson doesn't restrict the poetry as the common verse.In his view,the interdisciplinary quality of poetry is indispensable in achieving its goal of moral teaching.In the relation between poetry and philosophy,Emerson continues the Romantic thinkers' vein,and attempts to unite both; in the relation between poetry and science,Emerson incorporates the Enlightenment view and the Romantic view,holding that poetry and science are complementary,poetry stands in need of the rationality of science,and science requires the poetic quality of poetry; in the relation between poetry and social practice,Emerson insists on the moral reform,on the reforming power of poetry to the society.Emerson's own poetry practice justifies from another angle his theory of poetry.All in all,Poetry and philosophy,poetry and science,poetry and social practice,these three pairs form unity individually,and under the flag of moral truth,their form a wider unity.

As to the literary criticism,Emerson adheres to the ethics of transcendental criticism.Under the standard of transcendence,Emerson's criti cal principle is the universality and contemporaneity of genius; under the standard of ethics,Emerson's two criti cal principles are: the ethi cal criticism and the conformity of the writer's talent and his writing; furthermore,contrary to the emphasis of the subjectivism of his time,Emerson believes that a writer should guide the reader towards nature instead of leading towards himself.From these criti cal principles,it is not hard to conclude that in criticism Emerson follows the criti cal tradition of the Classi cal period rather than the Romantic principles.

The basis of morality is the affirmation of individual divinity.Started from the religious history,Emerson develops his idea of individual divinity,that is,the individual is divine,and by constant self-culture,he can approach the perfect character of God; started from the social reality,Emerson advocates for self-trust and self-reliance.Morality is the truth of nature.Nature,being the externalization of the universal soul—the Oversoul,and the symbol of spiritual world,is loaded with the moral truth.The individual communicates with the Oversoul through intuition,and then realizes the moral law inside of his soul.If the soul is inside us,it is manifested as the innate moral sentiment,and if the soul is outside us,it is manifested as the natural rules and natural laws.The two most important laws in nature is the law of compensation and the law ofcirculation.History is the time axle of nature,the carrier of the Oversoul; and the space axle of nature,culture,is the growth of the Oversoul.To sum up,it is in Emerson's belief that the soul is moral,its aim is the unity of the universe.The same Soul exists in every individual,and through the revelation of the moral law in nature,the individual can intuit his inner moral sentiment.This is how the moral law guide the individual from the condition of isolation and atomization to the wholeness and unity.The poet is the interpreter of the Oversoul and the bridge between nature and spirit; Poetry is the expression of the Oversoul,and it pursues the unity between poetry and philosophy,poetry and science,and poetry and practice; on the view of creating,Emerson insists on the unity between content and form; on criticism,Emerson advocate the unity of truth,goodness,and beauty.

The last part is conclusion.Emerson's poetics is unique in its ethi cal val ue.From his view onthe poet,the creating process,poetry,literary criticism and cosmic vision,he is proper to be called a classi cal Romanticist.Emerson's ethi cal thinking in poetics flows into the currents of American as well as European culture and ideology.

Key words:Emerson; Poetics; Moral Soul; Ethics; Unity

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GB/T 7714-2015 格式引文
余静远.诗与道德心灵:论爱默生诗学的伦理维度[M].北京:中国社会科学出版社,2020
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MLA 格式引文
余静远.诗与道德心灵:论爱默生诗学的伦理维度.北京,中国社会科学出版社:2020E-book.
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APA 格式引文
余静远(2020).诗与道德心灵:论爱默生诗学的伦理维度.北京:中国社会科学出版社
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