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Att se stjärnor på ljusa dagen: förvandling och försoning i August Strindbergs En blå bok
Lund University.
2009 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)Alternative title
Seeing stars in broad daylight : Transformation and Reconciliation in August Strindberg’s Zones of the Spirit (English)
Abstract [en]

In this thesis a pattern of coherence is explored in August Strindberg’s Zones of the Spirit (En blå bok) – a literary work consisting of a collection of short and quite diverse essays. It is argued that Strindberg’s pattern of thought has its base in a concept of transformation that characterizes his descriptions of nature and human life. In the introduction, the transformation process is tied to the concept of transmutation in alchemy, i.e. how matter is transmuted through different stages of purification into perfect gold. Connections are also made to the Christian notion of conversion, made manifest in the description of the stages of the meditation process. Finally the hypothesis is put forward that Strindberg writes in a cryptic manner when using alchemical symbolism. In the first two chapters the already known facts about Strindberg’s alchemical experience and his acquaintances with devotional literature are summed up. From chapter three on follows the analysis of Strindberg’s essays classified under the subtitles “The Transformationsof Nature”, “The Phenomena of Heaven” and “The Transformations of Man”. In the last chapter, “The Transformation of Poetry”, the fluid border between fiction and reality in Strindberg’s essays is explored.A comparative methodology is adopted in order to demonstrate the role of transformation, i.e. the texts in Zones of the Spirit are compared to alchemical ideas and to thoughts on conversion, found in literature on meditation. The study shows the role of the alchemical patterns of thought in Strindberg’s comprehension of different phenomena. For instance, applying the theme of transformation to Zones of Spirit lends explanation to Strindberg’s thoughts about reconciliation, but also to his thoughts about the process between life and death and whether there will be life after physical death.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Lund: Ellerströms förlag, 2009. , 407 p.
Keyword [en]
August Strindberg, Zones of the Spirit, En blå bok, devotional literature, literature of meditation, transformation, transmutation, alchemy, conversion, synthesis, Johann Arndt, Swedenborg, Goethe, Platon
National Category
Specific Literatures
Research subject
Humanities, Comparative literature
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-62590ISBN: 9789172472044 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-62590DiVA: diva2:1090908
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2017-05-02 Created: 2017-04-25 Last updated: 2017-05-02Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf