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Peter Barry

5.  Form Some years ago, in a second-hand bookshop, I happened upon a book about ‘orthometry’, a quaint and obsolete term defined in the book’s full title, which is The Art of Versification and the Technicalities of Poetry (published by J. Grant of Edinburgh, revised edition, 1923). The second chapter is called ‘Kinds of Poetry’, of which there are seven (the book claims), the first being ‘Lyric Poetry’, which is subdivided into sections on ‘The Ode’, ‘The Ballad’, ‘The Hymn and Song’ and ‘The Elegy’. Surprisingly, the sonnet is the sixth of the seven ‘Kinds of

in Reading poetry
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Literary form and religious conflict in early modern England

This book explores a range of literary and theatrical forms as means of mediating religious conflict in early modern England. It deals with the specific ways available to mediate religious conflict, precisely because faith mattered more than many other social paradigms. The first part explores the ways in which specific religious rituals and related cultural practices were taken up by literary texts. In a compelling rereading of the final act of 'The Merchant of Venice', the book investigates the devotional differences informing early modern observances of Easter. Subsequently, it explores the ways in which Christmas provided a confessional bridge uniting different religious constituencies. Goodnight ballads were not only commercially successful pieces of public entertainment but also effective forms of predominantly Protestant religious persuasion. The book's consideration of Elizabethan romance links the literary form to the sacrament of the Eucharist, and argues that the Eucharist debate had an impact on Elizabethan romances. The second part 'Negotiating confessional conflict' provides a rereading of When You See Me You Know Me, exposing the processes of religious reform as an on-going means of mediating the new normality of confessional plurality. It examines the potential of the tragic form by a reading of the play The White Devil, and discusses the ideological fault line in the views of witchcraft. The book also shows that Henry V anticipates later sermons of John Donne that served to promote 'an interrogative conscience'.

Jonathan Atkin

1 ‘Recognised’ forms of opposition Opposition to the Great War took many forms. This was perhaps not surprising, given its scale. It was a unique occasion for Great Britain. Never before had the whole, industrialised nation been mobilised for war on this scale. In medieval times, men who worked on the land had, in times of threat, left their harvests and gone to war as part of the agreement between landowner and serf. Much later, with the establishment of a regular army and navy, there was little need of binding agreements. As often as not, men joined up out of

in A war of individuals
Reading Futurism with Pierre Albert-Birot as witness, creative collaborator and dissenter
Debra Kelly

6 ‘An infinity of living forms, representative of the absolute’? Reading Futurism with Pierre Albert-Birot as witness, creative collaborator and dissenter Debra Kelly Debra Kelly ‘An infinity of living forms’ Artist, poet, witness Wanting to introduce new ideas is good, being unable not to introduce new ideas is much better. The ism is a bit like a magnifying glass. It magnifies the precise point under examination, but you can no longer see anything around it, and this point is so magnified that it attracts: you throw yourself into it, it swallows you up, and

in Back to the Futurists
Alexander Bove

, interestingly enough, alluded to by Ernst Kris in relation to the origin of caricature, which highlights its visual bent, and calls upon the creative importance of play, on the implicit idea that play can be a form of distraction that loosens the restriction of logic and social censorship, allowing unconscious structures to find external expression. Marcus unites these two concepts

in Spectral Dickens
Clive Cazeaux

9 Aesthetics as ecology, or the question of the form of eco-art Clive Cazeaux Although the origins of ecological art or eco-art (I shall use the latter name from here on) are relatively easy to identify, the full meaning and scope of the name are not so easy to determine. The emergence of eco-art as a visual art form is arguably the result of a number of interrelated factors in the 1960s: American and United Kingdom countercultures, including disillusionment with government and material wealth; conceptual art’s reaction against traditional aesthetic values

in Extending ecocriticism
Jenny M. James

This review article charts the general direction of scholarship in James Baldwin studies between the years 2015 and 2016, reflecting on important scholarly events and publications of the period and identifying notable trends in criticism. While these years witnessed a continuing interest in the relationship of Baldwin’s work to other authors and art forms as well as his transnational literary imagination, noted in previous scholarly reviews, three newly emergent trends are notable: an increased attention to Baldwin in journals primarily devoted to the study of literatures in English, a new wave of multidisciplinary studies of Baldwin, and a burgeoning archival turn in Baldwin criticism.

James Baldwin Review
Robert Z. Birdwell

Go Tell It on the Mountain sheds light on James Baldwin’s response to his Pentecostal religious inheritance. Baldwin writes protagonist John Grimes’s experience of “salvation” as an act of his own break with his past and the inauguration of a new vocation as authorial witness of his times. This break is premised on the experience of kairos, a form of time that was derived from Baldwin’s experience of Pentecostalism. Through John Grimes’s experience, Baldwin represents a break with the past that begins with the kairotic moment and progresses through the beginnings of self-love and the possibility of freedom enabled by this love. This essay contributes a new perspective on discussions of Baldwin’s representation of time and his relationship to Christianity.

James Baldwin Review
Open Access (free)
A Review of Hilton Als’ God Made My Face: A Collective Portrait of James Baldwin
Leah Mirakhor

This essay reviews Hilton Als’ 2019 exhibition God Made My Face: A Collective Portrait of James Baldwin at the David Zwirner Gallery. The show visually displays Baldwin in two parts: “A Walker in the City” examines his biography and “Colonialism” examines “what Baldwin himself was unable to do” by displaying the work of contemporary artists and filmmakers whose works resonate with Baldwin’s critiques of masculinity, race, and American empire. Mirakhor explores how Als’ quest to restore Baldwin is part of a long and deep literary and personal conversation that Als has been having since he was in his teens, and in this instance, exploring why and how it has culminated via the visual, instead of the literary. As Mirakhor observes, to be in the exhibit is not to just observe how Als has formed and figured Baldwin, but to see how Baldwin has informed and made Als, one of our most lyrical and impassioned contemporary writers and thinkers.

James Baldwin Review
Open Access (free)
Black Women as Surrogates of Liberation in James Baldwin’s If Beale Street Could Talk
Marquita R. Smith

This essay analyzes how James Baldwin’s late novel If Beale Street Could Talk represents Black women’s care work in the face of social death as an example of how Black women act as surrogates for Black liberation giving birth to a new world and possibilities of freedom for Black (male) people. Within the politics of Black nationalism, Black women were affective workers playing a vital role in the (re)creation of heteronormative family structures that formed the basis of Black liberation cohered by a belief in the power of patriarchy to make way for communal freedom. This essay demonstrates how Beale Street’s imagining of freedom centers not on what Black women do to support themselves or each other, but on the needs of the community at large, with embodied sacrifice as a presumed condition of such liberation.

James Baldwin Review