Guetti: A question of angles

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"...[if] we take the questions addressed to the urn by Keats as real questions, we begin to see that Keats doesn't know the very things about the urn that would have been of the utmost importance to the people who made it...And I would argue that what gives the urn its special status for Keats is precisely this problem: that the urn 'matters' to Keats because of his ignorance about it" (Guetti 386).

I found this idea interesting, because of what i can remember from the other articles we read about Keats' "Ode on a Grecian Urn" there was no doubt that Keats was trying to present us with a picture of what he saw.  However, I do not remember any of the other writers asking whether or not Keats was actually addressing the urn, or simply stating what he saw, making a remark about life in general.  I know this question posed by Guetti really started to make me think, this was not at all what i found when reading Keats' poem.  I saw the poem as pointing to instances of shared emotional pasts that we humans share, first love being just one of them.  Wow...I think i am really getting into this post structuralism, this is what i have been thinking all term, how can we ever think that there is one clear and definite reading, let alone an author's "intended meaning"  there is just too much that can be "read" into any work.

2 Comments

Angela Palumbo said:

James, I really enjoy reading your blogs. You often do pose very post structuralist-like questions. I'm starting to get into it as well. I think that it is very important to think about these big questions. Whether or not we can answer them is another issue. Are you using post structuralism for your final paper? I think that it would be a good fit for you.

Bethany Merryman said:

I felt this question really got me into the poststructuralist analysis readings as well. How wonderful to think that Keats may be posing questions because he genuinely doesn't know the answers.

His ignorance is bliss.

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