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Mathilde Blind: Rhythm, Energy, and Revolution

  • Gregory TateEmail author
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Part of the Palgrave Studies in Literature, Science and Medicine book series (PLSM)

Abstract

In the late nineteenth century, theories of thermodynamics and electromagnetism indicated that matter was shaped and reshaped by rhythmic interchanges of energy. Building on the importance of rhythm to physics, poets and science writers alike claimed that the metres of verse might be understood as an expression or manifestation of the pervasive rhythm that structured natural processes across the universe. This chapter proposes that such claims helped to inform the politically radical poems of Mathilde Blind, who identified the cyclical transformations of matter and energy as the foundation of an egalitarian sympathy between people and things. Throughout her poetry, Blind combines materialist and idealist philosophies in her invocation of a universal and revolutionary motion which originates in matter, but which also guides the progress of human thought and history.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of EnglishUniversity of St AndrewsSt AndrewsUK

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