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“Listening, Touching, Meaning: Words on Music in Baudelaire and Proust” - public lecture by Prof. Joseph Acquisto (University of Vermont)

The French Lecture Series - public lecture by Prof. Joseph Acquisto (University of Vermont)

How do writers convey the sense of being "touched" or "struck" by music? Professor Acquisto explores this question in the work of Charles Baudelaire and Marcel Proust. He distinguishes "dramatic music" from the emergent notion of "absolute music" in which the absence of referential meaning allows writers to fill the space with a verbal reply. That reply is also an act of creation.

Prof. Acquisto is a nineteenth-century French studies scholar whose most recent book,Proust, Music, and Meaning, articulates how notions of "modern" listening and absolute music inform the creation of literary meaning in Proust and allow us to measure the distance between what the novel says and what it does. Prof. Acquisto has published widely on poetry and philosophy. In The Fall Out of Redemption: Writing and Thinking Beyond Salvation in Baudelaire, Cioran, Fondane, Agamben, and Nancy(Bloomsbury, 2015), Acquisto claims that Baudelaire is a key instigator of a modern tradition of writing that attempts to relinquish the logic of redemption and to think beyond any theological, esthetic, or political salvation.

Sponsored by the Winthrop-King Institute for Contemporary French and Francophone Studies and the Department of Modern Languages and Linguistics

Wednesday, November 14, 2018 at 5:00pm

Diffenbaugh Building (DIF), 009
625 University Way, Tallahassee, FL

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Colleges, College of Arts and Sciences, Modern Languages and Linguistics

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