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The Paul De Man Notebooks$
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Paul de Man and Martin McQuillan

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780748641048

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2015

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748641048.001.0001

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Reply to Raymond Geuss (1983)

Reply to Raymond Geuss (1983)

Chapter:
(p.139) 13 Reply to Raymond Geuss (1983)
Source:
The Paul De Man Notebooks
Author(s):

Martin McQuillan

Publisher:
Edinburgh University Press
DOI:10.3366/edinburgh/9780748641048.003.0014

In this 1983 reply to Raymond Geuss, Paul de Man addresses Geuss's commentary on his essays ‘Sign and Symbol in Hegel's Aesthetics’ and ‘Hegel on the Sublime’. He begins by talking about the tenuous relationship between the disciplines of philosophy and literary theory and notes some developments that seem to strengthen that relationship. He then turns to Geuss's objections to his papers, first with ‘Sign and Symbol in Hegel's Aesthetics’, in which Geuss's stance is ‘to shelter the canonical reading of what Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel actually thought and proclaimed from readings which allow themselves, for whatever reason, to tamper with the canon’. De Man explains why he has misgivings about a non-problematical reading of Hegel's Aesthetics and about the acceptance at face value of his main pronouncements about art. He argues that it is on the symbolic nature of language and art that Geuss's canonical defense appears for the first time open to the reproach of literalism.

Keywords:   Raymond Geuss, Paul de Man, Aesthetics, philosophy, literary theory, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, language

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