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Aristotle on Catharsis - Dictionary of Arguments

Gadamer I 136
Catharsis/Tragedy/Aristotle/Gadamer: It seems clear to me that Aristotle is thinking of the tragic melancholy that overcomes the viewer in the face of tragedy. But melancholy is a kind of relief and solution in which pain and lust are strangely mixed. Why can Aristotle call this state a purification? What is the impure that is attached to the affects or that they are, and why is it erased in the tragic shock? The passing of the lament and the shudder is a painful split. >Fear/Aristotle, >Compassion/Aristotle.
There is a disagreement with what is happening, a disbelief that rebels against the horrible events.
But this is precisely the effect of the tragic catastrophe, that this disagreement with what "is", is dissolving. In this respect it brings about a universal liberation of the cramped chest. One is not only freed from the spell into which the lamentable and horrible nature of this one destiny had held one spellbound, but in one which with one is free from everything that holds one in relation with what disjoints one with what "is". The tragic melancholy thus reflects a kind of affirmation, a return to oneself, and if, as is not uncommon in modern tragedy, the hero is tinged with such tragic melancholy in his own consciousness, he has a little part in such affirmation himself by accepting his fate. >Affirmation/Gadamer.

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Concept/Author], [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] resp. "problem:"/"solution:", "old:"/"new:" and "thesis:" is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

Gadamer I
Hans-Georg Gadamer
Wahrheit und Methode. Grundzüge einer philosophischen Hermeneutik 7. durchgesehene Auflage Tübingen 1960/2010

Gadamer II
H. G. Gadamer
The Relevance of the Beautiful, London 1986
German Edition:
Die Aktualität des Schönen: Kunst als Spiel, Symbol und Fest Stuttgart 1977

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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2022-01-18
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