Nicholas Manning Reviews Jean-Michel Espitallier

To begin with a tentative hypothesis: what is taken from mathematics, in its application to literature, is by definition never its “content”, its undeniable positivism, but rather its formal elements: patterns, figurations, configurations, molds, models, fractals. Mathematics, seen in poetic terms, is thus largely concerned with such questions as the same and the variable, the one and the multiple, the arbitrary and the contingent; and whereas for mathematicians such questions are mere means to achieve verifiable solutions, for poets, they become unique and autonomous ends.

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