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Michelangelo's Poetry

Michelangelo's Poetry: Fury of Form

Copyright Date: 1985
Pages: 240
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  • Book Info
    Michelangelo's Poetry
    Book Description:

    Glauco Cambon asserts the independent significance of Michelangelo's poetry vis-a-vis his overwhelming contribution to the visual arts, while also investigating the formal and thematic relations of his writing to his sculpture and paintings

    Originally published in 1986.

    ThePrinceton Legacy Libraryuses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

    eISBN: 978-1-4008-5759-3
    Subjects: Language & Literature

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. Preface
    (pp. ix-2)
    Glauco Cambon
  4. 1 Humor, Transgressions, and Ambivalences
    (pp. 3-40)

    In 1898 Heinrich Wölfflin gave this afterthought on the Sistine Chapel ceiling frescoes, which he had just described as a triumph of vitality:

    If the figures painted on the ceiling did not so clearly betray the surging joy of their creator at work, one could say that the artist had vented his bad mood there and endeavored to avenge himself for the unloved task: let the Vatican gentlemen get their ceiling, but they might as well have to strain their necks for it.¹

    Whether Wölfflin thought of it or not when writing that passage, a burlesque poem by Michelangelo himself...

  5. 2 Protean Eros
    (pp. 41-127)

    When Michelangelo cried out to God:

    Come può esser ch’io non sia più mio?

    O Dio, o Dio, o Dio,

    chi m’ha tolto a me stesso,

    c’a me fusse più presso

    o più di me potessi che poss’io?

    How can it be that I am no longer mine?

    O God, o God, o God,

    who has taken myself away from me,

    and is now closer to me than myself

    and has more power on myself than I?

    he dramatically stated the nature of his experience of love: a seizure, a taking over of his self by an alien power. The...

  6. 3 Fury of Form
    (pp. 128-176)

    If the Word that was made flesh provided the last refuge for the aged artist, the translation of flesh into marble or painting and drawing, or into the written word, had been his lifework; and he put in the exercise of writing the same care that went into the carving of statue after finished (or unfinished) statue. As with his sculpture, often the unfinished poems have a life of their own and a corresponding hold on us, cryptical torsos of language that they are. Of even greater interest are the sometimes endless variants that mark the formal evolution of his...

  7. Notes
    (pp. 177-202)
  8. Bibliography
    (pp. 203-212)
  9. Index
    (pp. 213-220)
  10. Back Matter
    (pp. 221-221)