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DOI 10.12887/34-2021-2-134-07

Tomasz GARBOL, “The etherial combinations of the fancy, the rapid and subtle transitions of human passion.” On the Romantic Roots of the Privileges of Literary Language

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The article discusses the meaning of symbol as conceived by the Romantics, as well as the way it triggered the model of modernist literary art, which has appealed both to writers and their readership until the present day. Central to the Romantic rendition of ‘symbol’ is the concept of “a subtler language,” which Earl Wasserman derives from Percy B. Shelley’s poem The Revolt of Islam and which was made popular and scrutinized more deeply by Charles Taylor in his book Sources of the Self: The Making of the Modern Identity. It is precisely from the concept of “a subtler language” that the image of literary art as a privileged medium which expresses deep existential insights takes root. Such an understanding of art, which grants a special privilege to its various languages, has to a large extent determined the shape of culture and can be found, among others, in John Paul II’s Letter to Artists, which only proves its widespread appeal.

Translated by Dorota Chabrajska

Keywords: romantic doctrine of symbol, “subtler language,” modernism, symbolic mode, P. B. Shelley

Contact: Ośrodek Badań nad Literaturą Religijną, Instytut Literaturoznawstwa, Wydział Nauk Humanistycznych, Katolicki Uniwersytet Lubelski Jana Pawła II, Al. Racławickie 14, 20-950 Lublin, Poland
E-mail: tomasz.garbol@kul.pl
Phone +48 81 4453052
ORCID: 0000-0001-5411-0780

  1. ISSN 0860-8024
  2. e-ISSN 2720-5355
  3. The Republic of Poland Ministry of Science and Higher Education Value: 100.00
  4. Quarterly “Ethos” is indexed by the following databases: EBSCO, CEEOL, Index Copernicus (ICV 2017: 55.26), Philosopher’s Index, ERIH Plus.
  5. DOI Prefix 10.12887