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Alphabet : Inédit by Paul Valéry

By Paul Valéry

"En présence de l. a. lumière, et toutefois hors d'elle, de l. a. fenêtre haute, l'Ange du monde entier, qui d'une voix d'azur et d'or, sur le seuil de ce jour et de l'espace libre, annonce les cieux, les campagnes, les mers, les étendues, les peuples et les déserts, proclame et représente le reste et le Tout, affirme toutes ces choses qui sont en ce second même et qui sont comme si elles n'étaient aspect ; en présence de mes mains, de mes puissances, de mes faiblesses, de mes modèles, et hors d'eux ; specific de mes jugements, également éloigné de tous les mots et de toutes les formes, séparé de mon nom, dépouillé de mon histoire, je ne suis que pouvoir et silence, je ne fais element partie de ce qui est éclairé par le soleil, et mes ténèbres abstention est plénitude. "

Alors qu'il venait d'acquérir vingt-quatre lettrines gravées, un éditeur demanda à Valéry d'y associer vingt-quatre poèmes en prose dont chacun commencerait par une lettre différente. L'écrivain se proposa aussitôt d'y évoquer les vingt-quatre heures du jour, composa le recueil sans tout à fait l'achever, mais ne le publia pas. A certaines lettres de l'alphabet correspondent donc plusieurs poèmes, et c'est l'ensemble de ces textes qui se trouve ici rassemblé pour los angeles première fois.

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Extra info for Alphabet : Inédit

Sample text

According to Aristotle, imagination difffers from sensation in several respects. The sensing animal may only sense actual objects when all his senses are awake. Imagination, by contrast, may well function independently from any present sensation, as in dreams, when mental images appear to us while our eyes are closed. Such images in the mind cannot be said to proceed from an actual even of sight. , p. 587 sq. 26 j. 30 Mammals and animals that are capable of movement indeed show signs of possessing at least a minimal form of imagination.

189 and 196; Avicenna’s Commentary on the Poetics, p. 109 and 119. 53 naṣīr al-dīn ṭūsī and poetic imagination 35 the logical impossibility of there being any corresponding model whatsoever. The artist may picture actions and objects in a form other than that in which they appear in reality; but he is bound by an implicit agreement to represent solely forms that are “possible” or verisimilar, though they may not be real. Although his creations originate in his own imagination, the artist must comply with the demands of proper imitation.

Indeed, the Muslim philosophers strived to complete Aristotle’s doctrine of the faculty with a more systematic description. Avicenna relied on Aristotle’s analyses to unravel his own conception of takhyīl. And it was to clarify his predecessor’s claims that the Iranian philosopher proceeded to distinguish not one but two distinct faculties. Chimera and the Philosopher Avicenna redistributes the multiple tasks allotted by Aristotle to the imaginative faculty, distinguishing between three distinct powers:   ), the “cogitative or imaginative” faculty the “formative” faculty (           ), and the “estimative” faculty ( ).

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