Aesthestic Modernism in Rainer Maria Rilke’s The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge

Aesthestic Modernism in Rainer Maria Rilke’s The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge

Length: 1782 words (5.1 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

The aesthetic modernisms of the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries sought to redress the role of art and the artist in an industrial society in flux. It was in the metropolis that these transformations originated and were most violently felt.
There is perhaps no work that more effectively addresses the challenges faced by the artist in modernity than Rainer Maria Rilke’s 1910 classic, The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge. Rilke accomplishes this through an embedded discourse with the work of Charles Baudelaire and Georg Simmel. In particular, Rilke draws heavily from Baudelaire’s seminal work of criticism, “The Painter of Modern Life,” in formulating Malte’s goal in writing his Notebooks: to transfigure the present by rendering meaning onto the world. Yet, Rilke’s modernity appears strikingly different than Baudelaire’s; Malte’s experiences are violently enveloped by a more selfless, ordered, and stimulating urban environment of the early-twentieth-century metropolis. Rilke portrays the effects of Paris on Malte’s psychological condition through an engagement with Simmel’s 1903 essay, “The Metropolis and Mental Life.” In this way, Rilke reframes the problems posed by Baudelaire in his own historical epoch: the age of metropolis.
The principal task undertaken by Baudelaire surrounds what makes a contemporary work of art effective, which he accomplishes through a study of the work of Constantin Guys. Baudelaire claims that Guys’s work proves so compelling because it immerses itself within its own place in history, a condition Baudelaire terms as a work’s “modernity.” Baudelaire’s modernity constitutes “the ephemeral, the fugitive, the contingent, the half of art whose other half is the eternal and immutabl...

... middle of paper ...

...bited in Malte’s encounter with the stranger with St. Vitus’s disease. In imitating the actions of the stranger who is most spatially near, Malte at once attempts to bridge what Simmel would call intellectual and physical space, and engage with him beyond a purely mental level. Nevertheless, this adoption of a paradoxical framework not only suggests that Malte embraces a more integrative metaphysics in his failure to gain meaning from “pure existence,” but also comes to recognize the self as fundamentally constituting this relation. This idea draws heavy influence from the philosophy of Keirkegaard, who claimed that such a relation fundamentally constitutes the despair of the human condition. By interacting with the metropolis, Malte is thrown into a crisis that eventually allows him comes to terms with this despair, and thus facilitates the artistic process.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay The Notebook By Nicholas Sparks

- The Notebook The Notebook was a phenomenal film with incredible performances and many heartfelt moments from beginning to end. It is a love story that many of us fantasize of living someday. And although the movie has its good points, this movie also sets a bad example for some people. The Notebook takes place during the 1940s in North Carolina. It is a complicated love story between two teenage lovers named Noah Calhoun, a country boy, and Allie Nelson, a rich girl, who meet each other at a local carnival....   [tags: Nicholas Sparks, The Notebook, The Notebook]

Powerful Essays
1000 words (2.9 pages)

Translation And Reading By Rainer Schulte Essays

- TRANSLATION AND READING By Rainer Schulte In moments when the established boundaries and guiding principles of literary criticism are being severely questioned as to their past and present validity, new avenues of research thinking must be pursued. The field of Translation Studies engages us in an important research area that will revitalize the study of the arts and humanities. By its very nature, translation links theory with practice. Furthermore, Translation Studies bridges the gap between literary history, linguistics, semiotics, and aesthetics....   [tags: Translation, Language, Poetry]

Powerful Essays
1003 words (2.9 pages)

Analysis Of The Book ' True Notebooks ' Essay

- Nathaniel Hall one of the kids in the book True notebooks that were in Mark Salzman’s class stood out to me to me the most because he was showing signs of changing, but he is also manipulative and shows signs of not changing at all, the juvenile system was not effective enough at supporting Nathaniel’s change it failed to bring him up to his high potential, if he had stayed in the juvenile spending more time with Mark at the writing workshop and not transferred to the penitentiary he would have probably turned out to be okay....   [tags: Prison, Crime, Change, Criminology]

Powerful Essays
929 words (2.7 pages)

Description of Mount Rainer Volcanoe Essay

- Volcano Assignment Description of Volcanos: Mount Rainier Mount Rainier is a volcano that is located in the Cascade Range in Mount Rainier National Park, Washington. This volcano is 14,411 feet (4,392 meters) in its elevation. This is the highest mountain in Washington. This volcano is in the same mountain range as Mount Adams, Mount Baker, Mount St. Helens and Glacier Peak. It is known as a stratovolcano which is a large, steep volcano built up of alternating layers of lava and ash or cinders. This volcano is an active volcano and the last time it erupted was in 1894....   [tags: national park, top]

Powerful Essays
829 words (2.4 pages)

True Notebooks By Mark Salzman Essay

- “Its like everyone tells a story about themselves inside their own head. Always. All the time. That story makes you what you are. We build ourselves out of that story.” This quote is said by Patrick Rothfuss. In the book, True Notebooks, by Mark Salzman his students tell you many stories that people get to become apart of. Reading stories by other people makes their life more interesting. The power of storytelling is really important, because they have to catch your attention to make you want to hear more....   [tags: Meaning of life, Short story, Human, Tell]

Powerful Essays
710 words (2 pages)

The Prison Notebooks: Antonio Gramsci Essay

- Introduction Antonio Gramsci was founder of the Italian Communist Party in the 1920’s whose seminal publication “The Prison Notebooks” has proven to be one of the most influential leftist texts of the 20th Century. Echoing aspects of Marxist-Leninist thought, Gramsci was primarily concerned with the dominance of a small ruling elite upon society, both on a national and international scale. Arguably the foundational concept of Gramsci’s vision is that of hegemony, as this concept forms the basis from which the majority of Gramscian ideas evolve....   [tags: communist party, neo-realist hegemony]

Powerful Essays
1500 words (4.3 pages)

Essay about Letters to a Young Poet, by Rainer Maria Rilke

- Introduction Franz Kappus, a 19-year old student, wanted to solicit a career advice and a literary critique for the poems he had written (“Rainer Maria Rilke: Letters to a Young Poet” 1). Kappus solicited the advice and critique of Rainer Maria Rilke, a pioneer Austrian poet (“Rainer Maria Rilke: Letters to a Young Poet” 1). Rilke wrote ten letters in order to provide assistance to the needs of Kappus. These letters were in Rilke’s work, entitled, “Letters to a Young Poet.” There are numerous advantages and complication in the humanistic approaches to the study of psychology....   [tags: Franz Kappus]

Powerful Essays
2220 words (6.3 pages)

Burnning Notebooks as Therapy Essay

- Burnning Notebooks as Therapy For many people, the purpose of journaling is a sort of catharsis. With pen on paper, they are able to work through problems and issues. These problems are overcome simply by allowing time to process these tribulations enough to form sentences about them. I too use writing for this purpose. However, I often do not allow writing to be the last step in my emotional eradication. I was seventeen the first time I held a match to a completed page, but lighting the fire is the last step....   [tags: Personal Narrative Writing]

Powerful Essays
777 words (2.2 pages)

Rainer Maria Rilke Essay

- Rainer Maria Rilke 	"Rose, o pure contradiction, desire to be no one’s sleep beneath so many lids." This was Rainer Maria Rilke’s self-composed epitaph, written before leukemia took his life on December 29, 1926. The rose was a symbol of love, beauty, and devotion in many of Rilke’s writings.With quotes such as this Rilke became known as one of the best poets of the 20th century. 	Rainer Maria Rilke was born on December 4, 1875 in Prague, which is now the capital of Czechoslovakia....   [tags: essays research papers]

Free Essays
397 words (1.1 pages)

The Notebook Essay

-      The Notebook is a phenomenal film with incredible performances and many heartfelt moments from beginning to end. It is a love story that many of us fantasize of living someday. The story unfolds in recent times at a Nursing home with the introduction of an elderly lady (Gena Rowlands) who is being visited by an old man, known as Duke (James Garner), who also resides in the nursing home, and he's there to read her a story. He begins to read about a young girl named Allie (Rachel McAdams) who was visiting a cousin one summer in the late 1940s....   [tags: Film Movie Notebook Essays Movies]

Powerful Essays
450 words (1.3 pages)