Open Silence: An Application of the Perennial Philosophy to Literary Creation

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Livings, Edward A R (2006) Open Silence: An Application of the Perennial Philosophy to Literary Creation. PhD thesis, Victoria University.


Open Silence: An Application of the Perennial Philosophy to Literary Creation is a dissertation that combines a creative component, which is a long, narrative poem, with a framing essay that is an exegesis on the creative component. The poem, entitled The Silence Inside the World, tells the story of four characters, an albino woman in a coma, an immortal wizard, a dead painter, and an unborn soul, as they strive to comprehend the bizarre, dream-like realm in which they find themselves. The narrative utilizes various metaphysical elements of the Perennial Philosophy for the creation of character, event and setting, and also uses the concept of Imagination as the power and place of creative endeavour. The poem comprises 8,170 lines of blank verse arranged in three-line stanzas, for a total of 62,816 words. The exegesis accompanying The Silence Inside the World explains the creative value to the writer of the philosophy underlying the work. It does this by examining the artistic and critical experiences arising out of the writing of the poem. The first half of the exegesis, entitled 'Intentions: Tzimtzum', explores the biographical background of the author, those influences not only on the motivation to write such a creative text, but also on the original desire to investigate such creativity and spirituality in the first place. It also examines those elements of the Perennial Philosophy felt necessary for incorporation into the creative component. The section then delineates the factors Harold Bloom considers necessary for the creation of strong work and considers how the intended creative project may fulfil these requirements. Finally, 'Intentions' presents those creative, mythic and symbolic 2 Word count includes title page and chapter titles. materials gleaned from the critical process that are likely to be prove useful for the creative component. The shorter, second half of the essay, entitled 'Reflections: Tikkun', examines the intricacies of the drafting process for the poem and for the thesis as a whole, as well as the lessons gathered from the project and its overall success. The section ends with suggestions for further work not only for the present author, but also for others, writers and critics alike. The full exegesis, which comprises the segments 'Introduction', 'Intentions: Tzimtzum', 'Reflections: Tikkun', and 'Conclusion', totals 37,077 words.

Item type Thesis (PhD thesis)
Subjects Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Communication and the Arts
Historical > RFCD Classification > 420000 Language and Culture
Keywords framing essay; narrative poem; perennial philosophy; literary creation
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