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The Rhetoric of Synecdoche in Poetry
Synecdoche is an organic reasoning of wholeness. It is a form of thinking that defines the idea of central vitality or the wholeness of circulatory order as the very principle of universe. With a metaphysical paradigm which is explained as correlations between microcosm and macrocosm or between individuality and wholeness, synecdoche is truly based on a principle that all forms of beings are connected among them in organic and continuous ways. Underlying poetics are ideas about comprehensive nature the process of life, which is developed in itself, and the continuous development of creativity. Here, no distinction is made between material and spirit. The very material of universe is not either spirit or material, but vitality that integrates both of them. In this sense, synecdoche is clearly distinct from reasoning of the modern West which is based on dichotomy between spirit and material. Poetry is an expression of universal life. The world of poetry consists of individual lives. Because the individuality of life is a synecdochical expression of universal life, the wholeness of life is naturally immanent in the individuality of life. This suggests that poet, poetry and universal life are connected on a continuum. The life nature of the poet and the universal life of universe are internally related into wholeness. Under such synecdochical association, poetry has its own internal continuity that allows it to move from individuality to universality and from partiality to wholeness, finally reaching the embodiment of the natural principle of universe. The movement starts from creating a microcosm. This means going beyond a chaotic experiential world and creating a new world of harmony and order. A piece of poem is in itself a reproduction of the harmony and order of universe. Synecdochical rhetoric does not criticize modernity as it is. From the aesthetic view, what was intended to be drawn out from negating modernity is not aesthetic modernity. In fact, the poetics of life has not developed any substantial scheme. But rather it has intended to endure the disorder and chaos of the modern times by using nature as a means. The poetic possibility of synecdoche is related with an alternative view of modernity. Synecdochical perceptions of nature and universe are now becoming an alternative to the metonymic view of world based on modern mechanism. This can be explained as eco-poetry, or the post-modern perspective of synedochical rhetoric.
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