Rendering the Formless: Language and Style in 'Fausto'

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Abstract:
To use Fausto’s metaphors, the absence of any “forma” grounded in, or grounding, the intrinsic nature of things entails a situation in which all—mind, matter, self, world—is “informe” (Pessoa, 2018: 181). Pessoa’s struggle—and it is in this, I argue, that the drama of Fausto consists—is thus to find forms for the formlessness of the self and the world. The goal of this article is to investigate this paradox at the level of language and style. The ways in which words are used in Fausto to in-form the informe constitute, paradoxically, Pessoa’s grand style.
Para usar as metáforas de Fausto, a ausência dalguma “forma” fundamentada em, ou fundamentando, a natureza intrínseca das cousas conduz a uma situação em que tudo – mente, matéria, eu, mundo – é “informe” (Pessoa, 2018: 181). A luta de Pessoa – e é nisto, argumento, que o drama de Fausto consiste – é assim encontrar formas para o informe do eu e do mundo. O objetivo deste artigo é investigar este paradoxo ao nível da linguagem e do estilo. Os modos em que as palavras são usadas em Fausto para in-formar o informe constitui, paradoxalmente, o estilo grandioso de Pessoa.

Citation

Schwartz, John Pedro, "Rendering the Formless: Language and Style in 'Fausto'" (2018). Pessoa Plural—A Journal of Fernando Pessoa Studies. Brown Digital Repository. Brown University Library. https://doi.org/10.26300/at6s-bd10

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    Pessoa Plural—A Journal of Fernando Pessoa Studies (ISSN: 2212-4179) is an international peer-reviewed scholarly journal dedicated to studies of Fernando Pessoa. It is published jointly by the Department of Portuguese and Brazilian Studies at Brown University, the Department of …

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