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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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Allegories of Reading: Figural Language in Rousseau, Nietzsche, Rilke, and Proust

Allegories of Reading: Figural Language in Rousseau, Nietzsche, Rilke, and Proust

Chapter:
(p.303) 34 Allegories of Reading: Figural Language in Rousseau, Nietzsche, Rilke, and Proust
Source:
The Paul De Man Notebooks
Author(s):

Martin McQuillan

Publisher:
Edinburgh University Press
DOI:10.3366/edinburgh/9780748641048.003.0035

In this article, Paul de Man discusses his plan to complete a book entitled Allegories of Reading. The book offers a reading of four important authors — Friedrich Nietzsche, Rainer Maria Rilke, Marcel Proust, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau — along with their texts dating from 1750 to the early twentieth century. The most extensive reading offered is that of Rousseau, who is considered at length in an overview that includes the major fictional, political, and confessional writings. In the case of Proust and Rilke, the corpus is much less extended, although it claims to be representative of structures that recur in the work as a whole. No such claim is made for Nietzsche, where the reading of The Birth of Tragedy and of some sections mostly taken from the posthumous works is preparatory to an understanding of larger works such as Zarathustra or The Genealogy of Morals.

Keywords:   reading, Friedrich Nietzsche, Rainer Maria Rilke, Marcel Proust, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Paul de Man, Allegories of Reading, The Birth of Tragedy, Zarathustra, The Genealogy of Morals

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