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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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PRINTED FROM EDINBURGH SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.edinburgh.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Edinburgh University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ESO for personal use.date: 23 September 2021

Introduction to The Portable Rousseau (1973)

Introduction to The Portable Rousseau (1973)

(p.69) 6 Introduction to The Portable Rousseau (1973)
The Paul De Man Notebooks

Martin McQuillan

Edinburgh University Press

In this introduction to his volume The Portable Rousseau (1973), Paul de Man focuses on Jean-Jacques Rousseau's Social Contract. He begins by discussing the notion of textual allegory, as it derives from the Social Contract, and how it provides the generalising principle which makes it possible to consider theotropical or ethical allegories as particularised versions of this generative model and thus to break down the significance of such thematic distinctions. He then suggests that the ‘inclusion’ of a deconstructed version of the Profession de foi within the context of the Social Contract is predictable, since both works can be considered as the same political allegory, the first on a figural, the second on a textual level. He also cites Rousseau's novel La nouvelle Héloïse as a textural allegory like the Social Contract and not like the Profession de foi.

Keywords:   textual allegory, The Portable Rousseau, Paul de Man, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Social Contract, Profession de foi, political allegory, La nouvelle Héloïse

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