Scholarly responses to Henry Miller's works have by no means been various and for a few years Miller used to be now not a trendy author for literary experiences. actually, there exist in simple terms 3 collections of essays referring to Henry Miller's oeuvre. considering the fact that those books seemed, a brand new iteration of foreign Miller students has emerged, one who is re-energizing severe readings of this significant American Modernist. Henry Miller: New views provides new essays on rigorously selected issues inside Miller and his highbrow background to shape the main authoritative assortment ever released in this writer.
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Extra info for Henry Miller: New Perspective
With his more lenient St. Anthony side he pleads for a creative approach to life, which ultimately leads to China. China is only attainable when one has a proper relationship with art. “By living into his art,” Miller explains, “he adopts for his world an intermediary realm in which he is all-powerful, a world which he dominates and rules” (WOH, 7). The art’s role is thus essentially intermediary. Art is only a means to life, to the life more abundant. It is not in itself the life more abundant.
The full present for Miller is fundamentally a possibility, a beginning. It is the absolution of time and the salvation of the modern artist. He explains: … And finally, it is not the past which matters at all, because when we come into the full present [my italic] the past is there and future too and neither are frightening or bewildering. In the full present which is the living moment, we join forces with past and future … we forget and enjoy, and remember everything. (112) Together with Walt Whitman, Miller thus rejects the time qua historical time, but, as an artist, welcomes it universally, or “accepts it absolutely” (63).
The hero, then, is not Time, but Timelessness,” wrote Miller in the very first page of the book (CAN, 1). While “time” can be read here both historically and as a temporal category in a metaphysical sense, in either case the failure is evident for Miller. Historically, modern times have failed to produce the better man and world that “our heroes” of the Enlightenment era dreamt about. Miller is fighting against a notion of time that is embedded in the very metaphysics of the age, a metaphysics that is commonly taken to support the linear concept of history.