This book explores how Banvilleâs remarkably coherent body of verse theory and practice, full of provocative energy and mischievous humour, shaped debates about poetic value and how to identify it during a period of aesthetic uncertainty caused by diverse social, economic, political and artistic factors. It features a detailed new reading of Banvilleâs most infamous and misunderstood text, the Petit TraitÃ© de poÃ©sie franÃ§aise, as well as extended analyses of verse collections such as Les Stalactites, Odes funambulesques, Les ExilÃ©s, Trente-six Ballades and Rondels, illuminated by wide reference to Banvilleâs plays, fiction and journalism. Evans elucidates not only aesthetic tensions at the heart of nineteenth-century French verse, but also a centuries-old tension between verse mechanisms and an unquantifiable, mysterious and elusive poeticity which emerges as one of the defining narratives of poetic value from the Middle Ages, via the Grands RhÃ©toriqueurs and Dada, to the experiments of the OuLiPo and beyond.
About: ThÃ©odore de Banville (1823-1891) was a prolific poet, dramatist, critic and prose fiction writer whose significant contribution to poetic and aesthetic debates in nineteenth-century France has long been overlooked.
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