To Bathurst di Alexander Pope, ovvero la storia del capitale tra ambiguità ideologiche, mixed mode e profetismo mondano
- money, narrative mode, epic, tragedy, prophecy
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The essay is focused on the analysis of the epistle addressed to Lord Bathurst on the use of riches, in which Pope, by drawing on classical and Christian sources, makes an apology of the ideal of aurea mediocritas, to which the landed aristocracy should conform, and a harsh criticism of the capitalistic system and its financial operations. Pope’s discourse, however, shows a series of aporiae which undermine its coherency. I contend that these aporiae manifest themselves also on the metanarrative level, where the epistle acquires the features of a history of capital. Pope’s representation of such a history is characterized by an intrinsic ambivalence which manifests itself in the ambiguous coexistence of two opposite modes of narration, epic and tragic.