Thesis (Selection of subject)Thesis (Selection of subject)(version: 348)
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Tenants in the House of Language: English Romantic Authorship
Thesis title in Czech: Nájemníci v domě jazyka: autorství v anglickém romantismu
Thesis title in English: Tenants in the House of Language: English Romantic Authorship
Key words: autorství|romantický autor|anglický romantismus|Samuel T. Coleridge
English key words: authorship|the Romantic author|English Romanticism|Samuel T. Coleridge
Academic year of topic announcement: 2019/2020
Type of assignment: diploma thesis
Thesis language: angličtina
Department: Department of Anglophone Literatures and Cultures (21-UALK)
Supervisor: Mgr. Miroslava Horová, Ph.D.
Author: hidden - assigned and confirmed by the Study Dept.
Date of registration: 18.10.2019
Date of assignment: 21.10.2019
Administrator approval: zatím neschvalováno
Confirmed by Study dept. on: 24.10.2019
Date and time of defence: 03.06.2021 00:00
Date of electronic submission:11.05.2021
Date of proceeded defence: 03.06.2021
Submitted/finalized: committed by student and finalized
Reviewers: PhDr. Zdeněk Beran, Ph.D.
There was a shift in meaning of the concept of literary authorship in Romanticism. “The author” started to denote a subjectivity as the originator of the text. In terms of reasons for this conceptual shift, critics and historians speak of the emergence of the concept of the Self accompanied by the Kantian paradigmatic reassessment of the epistemological role of subjectivity and by expansion of the Idealist Weltanschauung. Moreover, there are more pragmatic reasons, such as the emerging copyright law and accompanying individualist ideology employed in the publishing industry. Throughout the history of criticism, the Romantic author (or Romantic authorship) became a concept denoting a subjectivist image of authorship, where text is a product of the author’s subjectivity solely. The concept of Romantic authorship is often associated with originality, authenticity, individualism, and profound subjectivism.
The thesis will attempt to deconstruct the concept of Romantic authorship and demonstrate that Romantic ideas about authorship were less subjectivist (and more complex and even contradictory) than criticism often suggests. Presenting a historicizing view on the concept of the Romantic author, I argue that the nature of the concept authorship in Romanticism was contested (as opposed to outright subjectivist) and that the subjectivist concept of Romantic authorship as it is used in criticism was established in the critical debates of the 20th century. I will examine Romantic notions about authorship on the background of contemporary philosophical debates about the relationship between language and the subject. Perceiving the issue of language as an epistemological counterpart of the then intensely debated philosophical issue of subject/object dichotomy in terms of ontology, I will present the most prominent stances of this debate (subjectivist, objectivist, organicist, dialectical). In a case study on Coleridge’s poetry (“Kubla Khan”, “Love”, “Self-Knowledge”) and Biographia Literaria, I will present ideas about authorship inherent in these texts in connection with the stances of the debate on language. Coleridge, who was himself philosophically interested in the problematic of the relationship between language, subjectivity, and the objective, is (mainly because of his reception of Kant) often interpreted as a transcendentalist, posing the Self as an ontologically and epistemologically primary existence, thus corroborating the subjectivist image of Romantic authorship. However, I will argue that his poetry and autobiography reflect problems associated with epistemological subjectivism, as well as objectivism. Thus, concepts of literary authorship (as an interaction of the self and the objective through a text) inherent in his works are multiple and may serve as a problematization of the subjectivist notion of the Romantic author.
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