Print version ISSN 0101-3173
SILVA FILHO, Antonio Vieira da. Irony in the theory of novel: from the normative-compositional requirement in Goethe to living art in Novalis. Trans/Form/Ação [online]. 2012, vol.35, n.2, pp. 51-67. ISSN 0101-3173. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0101-31732012000200004.
The present work intends to explain the concept of irony in the theory of the novel. The explication of the concept of irony unfolds in a double process: as a normative-compositional requirement and as a subjective radicalization that exceeds normativity. In the first sense, irony conceptually configures a totality in an epic work, based on the objective fragmentation in modern social relations. In this sense, irony is presented as a subjective move that serves the epic normativity of the novel, as its purpose is to harmonize the subjective ideal with historical bourgeois objectivity. Its paradigm is represented, in this article, by Goethe. The other sense in which Romantic irony appears is demarcated by the extreme form of subjectivity. This sense of irony, recognizing the impossibility of the realization of its harmonious ideal in modernity because the modern world presents itself as an effectivity opposed to subjective longing, takes refuge in its own interiority and distances itself from the present world, seeking refuge in times and places more propitious to poetical realization. Novalis is the model of this ironic radicalization. This ironic form, contrary to "ironic cadence" of Goethe, negates the novel form, because the subjective aspect of pure reflection, the lyrical, superposes the objective historical present that the novel inevitably must leave behind.
Keywords : Young Lukács; Irony; Novel; Goethe; Novalis.