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Additional resources for Gary Snyder and the American Unconscious: Inhabiting the Ground
35 As that which is other to consciousness - unconscious - it cannot be portrayed adequately in discursive prose (the modernist writing of Faulkner, Stein and Joyce, for instance, together with the disjunctive poetics of Lacan's own text, represent textual instances in which unconscious effect as discourse is legible). The emergence of the unconscious as the return of the The American Unconscious 25 Other occurs at that place and moment when the subject is under the illusion of being at home, being comfortably ensconced within the familiar and the known.
Particular natural facts are symbols of particular spiritual facts. 3. Nature is the symbol of the spirit. 49 Language is thus an intermediary term, falling between man and Nature, but operating so transparently and with such orthocorrespondency that it does not obscure the equally correspondent, iconic, relation which obtains between the world of phenomena and the world of the spirit. This world of the spirit consists of a transcendent dimension which is nevertheless anthropocentrically ordered: 'Every appearance in nature corresponds to some state of the mind, and that state of the mind can only be described by presenting that natural appearance as its picture' (p.
The paradigmatic literary instance of this consists of the passage early in Nature when Emerson experiences his famous transcendental elevation on Boston Common- a passage which Bloom calls 'the most American passage that will ever be written': 51 Standing on the bare ground - my head bathed by the blithe air and uplifted into infinite space - all mean egotism vanishes. I become a transparent eyeball; I am nothing; I see all; the currents of the Universal Being circulate through me; I am part or parcel of God.