Baudelaire & Mallarme were at the center of the Symbolist movement. They both considered Poe a spiritual father. Moreover, there are two American Symbolistes who played important roles: Francis Vielé-Griffin and Francais Stuart Merrill. Our other apps curate existing music. In this one, the app will, hopefully provide a framework for a group of new works.
I am learning that my attitude toward the symbolists may be off the beaten path. In the work of the symbolists I see strong, palpable intuitions of deconstructionism. I reject those who dismiss the symbolists as a group that was merely concerned with shifting grounds from God to symbols, archetypes, myths.
Mary Klages' Literary Theory for Beginners, pages 64-65:
"If you try to define or categorize ideas, you attempt to present them as if they were absolute, fixed, definitive, and total, rather than unstable and provisional. So poststructuralists sometimes write as if the purpose of language is to obscure definitive meaning rather than to present and clarify an argument."
Doesn't this bring to mind Baudelaire's aversion to anything "positif"? He admired Poe for symbols that wrap around to their opposites. This is the way I take Wagnerian Eros & Thanatos, as a Western yin/yang, emphasizing *totality* not opposition. And as I emphisize the totality over the oppositional aspect of Eros & Thanatos, I am resisting the feminist emphasis on phallogocentrism and Western binary *oppositions*.
Also, in epigrammatic form, Robert Walser's condensation of Wagnerian Eros & Thanatos, *Greifensee*, makes this point.
The symbolists were seeking the *umgreifende*. They dealt with binary oppositions but they were not content there, they were not mislead or tyrranized by those oppositons.
In this sense, they were not merely trying to replace theistic grounds with other dubious grounds--symbolic, archetypal, mythological, they were examining symbols, archetypes and myths, finding them unstable, and relishing that instability, *centering their aesthetics upon that instability*.
Following the poetic works of Poe, Baudelaire, Maeterlinck & Mallarme there came systematizing Symbolistes:
Levi Strauss (Is a synecdoche a myth-seed?)
No women, but Emily Dickinson, Gertrude Stein, Djuna Barnes, Mina Loy, Marianne Moore (who else?) were onto these problems, each in her own way.
Edna St. Vincent Millay?