A review of Michael Wood's Yeats and Violence (2010) and Alain Badiou's Five Lessons on Wagner (2010), this article argues that Wood, by not taking the occult seriously in Yeats, mistakes his general imaginative project, which, as Badiou argues concerning Wagner, is to discover a viable modern form of public ceremony that incorporates the transcendental and supernatural into fully immanent forms that are never pro forma but ever disruptive of habit and complacency. The truth of violence for Yeats, as for Wagner or Badiou, is thus not any supernatural transcendence but immortal beauty of and in the flesh.
Daniel T. O'Hara; And All the Ceremonies to Come: Of High Modernism and Visionary Violence. boundary 2 1 August 2011; 38 (3): 147–164. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/01903659-1430854
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