poetic resolution

  ---- by Gerry Coulter
  Baudrillard possessed a radical temperament which held more in common with poetry than other forms of thought and writing (TE). Poetry and the poetic appear numerous times in his writing but the most important concept concerning both for his overall oeuvre involves poetic resolution. Baudrillard accepts that Truth with a capital 'T' no longer affords a solution as truth, the real and meaning are multiple and appear only locally as partial objects (SS). Because of this circumstance, he says, 'perhaps we can aim at a poetic resolution of the world' (VI, 68). Poetic resolution is an important part of his attempt to think without making a contribution to any system. It stands against the empirical resolution of the world of the social sciences. In a time of an epistemological break, when so called 'scientific' thinking has swept all other forms of thought into some prehistory of knowledge (MP), Baudrillard aims his thought at a more poetic destination. He hints that he borrowed the concept from Saussure (PC).
  The key to poetic resolution for Baudrillard is that it allows thought and writing their greatest liberty. The 'task of philosophical thought' for Baudrillard is to 'go to the limit of hypotheses and processes, even if they are catastrophic'. 'The only justification for thinking', he says, 'is that it accelerates these terminal processes'. Poetic resolution then is about going 'beyond the discourse of truth . . . for, facing a world that is unintelligible and enigmatic, our task is clear: we must make that world even more unintelligible, even more enigmatic' (VI, 83). Baudrillard's challenge to philosophy runs against its tendency to transform the enigmas of the world into philosophical questions. He would rather that the enigma remain total (CM2). This rests at the core of his concern to turn philosophy, which has long sought to understand that there is something rather than nothing, on its head, by seeking to understand why there is nothing rather than something (CM).
  The poetic plays a significant part in Baudrillard's strategy to bring resolution, through thought and writing, to the unsatisfactory times in which he finds himself. Along with fables, countless literary and artistic references, the poetic is Baudrillard's great inspiration in his struggle against the forces of integral reality (F). In his thought Baudrillard felt a radical opposition between a poetic, singular configuration, linked to the metamorphosis of forms, as against the kind of virtual reality that is prevalent today. In a poetic approach it is the forms which become language as the passage of forms - a kind of inhabited void (F). Poetic resolution (and nothing is more poetic for Baudrillard than reversibility) was a way out of the restrictions of the social sciences and political commitments to 'improving' our world until it becomes a technoscientific nightmare.
  Beyond discourses of Truth, Baudrillard did find his own way to make the world, which came to him as enigmatic and unintelligible, even more so. Rather than pointing to Truth he pointed to its absence in a way which goes beyond traditional forms of inquiry. We must keep in mind that system failure was a lesser concern to Baudrillard than the possibility that our system might succeed into a modelled and computerised nightmare. Thought was not to be aimed at contributing to this system but to enigma and uncertainty. This enabled Baudrillard to think and write in a very independent manner without debt to cultural or philosophical systems, or to politics. What allowed him to open up to this approach was that he understood that theory precedes the world. 'Things appear to us only through the meaning we have given them' (F, 91). Thinking is what brings the world into existence for each of us. Radical thought was the kind in which words and concepts refer to each other and can, as in Baudrillard's writing, create a pure event, without the need to form practical instructions or empirical knowledges (CA).
  An example of Baudrillardian poetic resolution is his story of the soldier who meets Death in the marketplace. The soldier, frightened because he thought he saw Death make a menacing gesture in his direction, flees to Samarkand on a fast horse. Death, when called into account by the king, says he too was surprised to see the soldier - as his rendezvous with the soldier was not until tomorrow, in Samarkand (S). This is a very poetic way of making the point that we can run towards our fate by trying to avoid it - something Baudrillard felt happened at the individual level and that of systems. Another of many poetic passages in his writing involves his resolution of simulacra drawing on Borges' fable of the map and the territory. Our case is reversed from that described by Borges, says Baudrillard, because for us we only have a few fragments of the real remaining to float and drift on the map (VI).
   § anagrams
   § death
   § destiny
   § poetry
   § reversibility
   § writing

The Baudrillard dictionary. . 2015.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • anagrams —    by Mike Gane   Although the anagram and anagrammatisation are a reference point for Baudrillard there are very few actual examples of them in his writings. As with other key concepts there is considerable latitude in their definition and there …   The Baudrillard dictionary

  • fragments —    by Mike Gane   In his studies of the double spiral of the symbolic and the semiotic (EC) Baudrillard includes the spiral of the fragment and the fractal (F). The fragment belongs to the symbolic order, but the fractal belongs to the semiotic… …   The Baudrillard dictionary

  • cool memories —    by Richard J. Lane   Baudrillard does give his own paradoxical definition of the five texts (CM, CM2, CM3, CM4, CM5) gathered under the title of Cool Memories: They are multiple fragments of a nonexistent hypothetical continuity which can only …   The Baudrillard dictionary

  • language —    by Gerry Coulter   For Baudrillard language is always aimed at the social (SED) and is understood as an artifical system (TE). While discourse tends to produce meaning he says that language (and writing) always create illusion (PC).… …   The Baudrillard dictionary

  • poetry —    by Richard G. Smith   Baudrillard s poems were published in 1978 as L Ange du Stuc (The Stucco Angel) an unpaginated book with no preface or afterword and were not fully translated into English until 2001 (UB). Baudrillard wrote the sequence… …   The Baudrillard dictionary

  • literature —    by Richard G. Smith   In the early 1960s, Baudrillard wrote literary reviews of fiction from Italo Calvino, Uwe Johnson and William Styron for Jean Paul Sartre s periodical Les Temps Modernes. The reviews were Baudrillard s first publications… …   The Baudrillard dictionary

  • Borges, Jorge Luis —   (1899 1986)   see globalisation , literature , modernity and poetic resolution …   The Baudrillard dictionary

  • Saussure, Ferdinand de —   (1857 1913)   see America , anagrams , hyper reality , nihilism , poetic resolution , semiotics , sign , simulation and value + structural law of value …   The Baudrillard dictionary

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  • Japan — /jeuh pan /, n. 1. a constitutional monarchy on a chain of islands off the E coast of Asia: main islands, Hokkaido, Honshu, Kyushu, and Shikoku. 125,716,637; 141,529 sq. mi. (366,560 sq. km). Cap.: Tokyo. Japanese, Nihon, Nippon. 2. Sea of, the… …   Universalium

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