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ISSN : 1226-4946(Print)
ISSN : 2288-5412(Online)
The Yeats Journal of Korea Vol.30 pp.215-244

W. B. Yeats's Occult Poetics: The “Wisdom of the Daemonic Image”*

Kim Dal-Yong


Yeats’s studies of ancient myths, legends and occult tradition form a part of hisartistic enterprise to quest for the occult wisdom and reaffirm the power of occultimagination. His work is so deeply immersed in the supernatural that it intends toregenerate the modern world by reopening ancient spiritual wellsprings and revivingprimal religious sensibilities. His interest in occultism did most to create occultimages and symbols as signs of imaginative salvation. Yeats’s mystical lore helpedhim ascertain the spiritual reality within human consciousness and use magicalsymbols as a means of calling up visions. Art for Yeats is about the “wisdom ofthe daemonic image” which holds for a moment of illumination the warringopposites of flesh and soul. Yeats created occult images of spiritual intensity toconvey the quality of the Unity of Being out of the increasingly scientific andsecular culture of the modern age. His occult images create the rich texture of hispoetry that examines the spiritual situation of modern humanity.


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