In Contingency, Irony, and Solidarity, Richard Rorty makes this statement in passing:

"Merely philosophical" questions, like Eddington's question about the two tables, are attempts to stir up a factitious theoretical quarrel between vocabularies which have proved capable of peaceful coexistence. The questions I have recited above are all cases in which philosophers have given their subject a bad name by seeing difficulties nobody else sees. But this is not to say that vocabularies never do get in the way of each other. On the contrary, revolutionary achievements in the arts, in the sciences, and in moral and political thought typically occur when somebody realizes that two or more of our vocabularies are interfering with each other, and proceeds to invent a new vocabulary to replace both. For example, the traditional Aristotelian vocabulary got in the way of the mathematized vocabulary that was being developed in the sixteenth century by students of mechanics. Again, young German theology students of the late eighteenth century – like Hegel and Hölderlin – found that the vocabulary in which they worships Jesus was getting in the way of the vocabulary in which they worshiped the Greeks. Yet again, the use of Rossetti-like tropes got in the way of the early Yeats’s use of Blakean tropes.

suggesting (given the context) that Yeats's later poetry was a synthesis of that of Blake and Rossetti. What is he referring to here? Is this link between these three poets documented somewhere? Some references would be great.

  • Rossetti who? What makes you think of Christina and not, for example, Dante Gabriel? May 31 at 15:40
  • @henryflower makes a valid point. Could you please add which of the Rosettis Rorty is talking about here? Not everyone has access to the full page on Google Books (since this varies from country to country).
    – Tsundoku
    May 31 at 17:25
  • That's a good point, unfortunately the paragraph (reproduced above) does not resolve the ambiguity since it discusses an entirely different topic and only mentions poetry in the very small portion of text quoted above.
    – pseudosudo
    May 31 at 17:30
  • 1
    I see. I was worried about that. Does the book have an index that mentions either of the two Rosettis? (By the way, which chapter is the quote from?)
    – Tsundoku
    May 31 at 17:31

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