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A spiritual wit
Laura Alexander

visual artistry in relation to Christian spirituality, and these poems helped Killigrew to re-define her expressions of poetical wit in relation to her spirituality, which she privileges over secularism. Her poems, ‘St. John Baptist Painted by herself in the Wilderness, with Angels appearing to him, and with a Lamb by him’ and ‘Herodias’s Daughter presenting to her Mother St. John’s 27 EARLY MODERN SELVES AND THE REASON V. PASSION DEBATE Head in a Charger, also Painted by herself’, accompany the John the Baptist paintings, both currently lost. Anxious to separate her

in Writing and constructing the self in Great Britain in the long eighteenth century
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Author: Rachael Gilmour

At a time when monolingualist claims for the importance of ‘speaking English’ to the national order continue louder than ever, even as language diversity is increasingly part of contemporary British life, literature becomes a space to consider the terms of linguistic belonging. Bad English examines writers including Tom Leonard, James Kelman, Suhayl Saadi, Raman Mundair, Daljit Nagra, Xiaolu Guo, Leila Aboulela, Brian Chikwava, and Caroline Bergvall, who engage multilingually, experimentally, playfully, and ambivalently with English’s power. Considering their invented vernaculars and mixed idioms, their dramatised scenes of languaging – languages learned or lost, acts of translation, scenes of speaking, the exposure and racialised visibility of accent – it argues for a growing field of contemporary literature in Britain pre-eminently concerned with language’s power dynamics, its aesthetic potentialities, and its prosthetic strangeness. Drawing on insights from applied linguistics and translation studies as well as literary scholarship, Bad English explores contemporary arguments about language in Britain – in debates about citizenship or education, in the media or on Twitter, in Home Office policy and asylum legislation – as well as the ways they are taken up in literature. It uncovers both an antagonistic and a productive interplay between language politics and literary form, tracing writers’ articulation of linguistic alienation and ambivalence, as well as the productivity and making-new of radical language practices. Doing so, it refutes the view that language difference and language politics are somehow irrelevant to contemporary Britain and instead argues for their constitutive centrality to the work of novelists and poets whose inside/outside relationship to English in its institutionalised forms is the generative force of their writing.

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Final vistas of Spenser and Shakespeare
Robert Lanier Reid

Does Spenser’s Mutabilitie Song complete his epic, or point to a more transcendent scope in its final half? It derogates the pagan gods; it reforms the titan Mutability (unlike the discarded demon-titans in books 1-6); and its grand pastoral pageant falls short of the symbolic city toward which the poem moves. Spenser’s holistic design is more clearly implied in his ordering of deadly sins (FQ 1.4). Compared with Dante’s pattern of sins, of purgations, and of ascensions in the Commedia, it offers a vital clue to The Faerie Queene’s format – based on the Christian-Platonism that informs all its figures and sequences. Much evidence suggests Elizabeth I would admire a mystic structuring of this epic that so honors her. As for Shakespeare’s attentiveness to last things, we explore the theme of ‘summoning’ in Hamlet and King Lear, both concerned – as in The Summoning of Everyman – with ‘readiness’ and ’ripeness’ in the face of death and judgment. In The Tempest’s deft collocation of all social levels and artistic genres, and its odd convergence with Spenserian allegory, we debate the insistence on Shakespeare’s secularism by examining the range of meaning in Prospero’s ‘Art’.

in Renaissance psychologies
Phrenology in Britain during the first decade of the nineteenth century
William Hughes

The origins of phrenology are Continental rather than British. The opening chapter therefore surveys the earliest theories of an identifiable phrenology – those formulated by the German physician Franz Joseph Gall in Vienna – as they were reported in the British press. The religious controversy surrounding Gall’s studies, which were ostensibly associated with a form of secularism incompatible with Roman Catholic spirituality, is noted for its prominence in British popular reportage, where authors were quick to avail themselves of the opportunity to enjoin in xenophobic mockery. Gall’s extensive tour of Europe, which followed the apparently hostile reception by the Austrian authorities, is then considered, and hitherto unreprinted reports of the doctor’s earliest phrenological experiments are quoted and analysed. These include both favourable accounts and others which dismissed phrenology as a fad already in decline, and thus not likely to attract any following in Britain. The possibility of Gall travelling to Britain, and of his analysing the crania of the upper classes, was similarly the subject of mocking journalism. The chapter reproduces some of the earliest graphic images of the phrenological model of the skull and discusses and explains the significance of the earliest tabulation of the phrenological organs to appear in the English language. Notably, the fluid and developing nature of the phrenological map of character is acknowledged, and the debate about the function and location of different organs is played out in the popular press. This is an important chapter as it outlines the earliest incarnation of phrenology in anglophone culture.

in The dome of thought
Marilynne Robinson’s essays and the crisis of mainline Protestantism
Alex Engebretson

likely to be in one of those lately bold and robust big churches who are obsessed with sins Jesus never mentioned at all’ ( Givenness of Things 100–101). The Religious Right's call to ‘the return to traditional values seems to them to mean […] a bracing and punitive severity toward the vulnerable among us’ ( When I Was a Child xi). Robinson's imagination of the liberal church as the church of social justice against the callousness of evangelicalism is the starting place for her deeper critiques of the Religious Right, which concern national history and secularism

in Marilynne Robinson
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Queering Islam and micropolitical disorientation
Alberto Fernández Carbajal

nor as inhabitants of a different semiotic dimension; instead, like most of their other coreligionist and diasporic comrades, queer or otherwise, they should be seen as contributing to the disorganisation of solidified ethnic and sexual categories in our allegedly liberal West. I also discuss the work of Timothy Fitzgerald in order to reveal how, despite their constant pitting in Western discourses, ‘secularism’ and ‘religion’ are interdependent concepts only conceptually separated during the European Enlightenment, demonstrating that the supposedly secular West is

in Queer Muslim diasporas in contemporary literature and film
Andrew Teverson

’ as a means of dramatising ‘its continuing obsession with the metaphors Islam makes available’. 23 The Verses , she agrees, is written from a secular perspective; this perspective, however, is not identical to the secularism of the liberal West because Rushdie’s is an ‘Islamic secularism’ conceived from the point of view of an insider of the faith. 24 ‘Rather than confine a reading of the text to the somewhat unhelpful oppositions between fundamentalism and secularism, therefore’, Suleri proposes: To move beyond the obvious good and

in Salman Rushdie
W. J. McCormack

precision, profusion and ‘claritas’ of the depicted comestibles, together with the careful representation of clothing, ceramics and other human artefacts, cannot be accounted for simply in the appeal of secularism. 6 At the price of interrupting this little history of Dutch art in one of its aspects, some interpretation of Beuckelaer’s painting should be attempted. Not only does the

in Dissolute characters
Tracey Nicholls

that Western secularism (France’s laïcité ; the United States’ constitutional commitment to separation of church and state) thinks of as deeply personal and individually variable, 21 what does this mean we can expect of Foucault with respect to these questions? Perhaps a publically performed spirituality functions like the ‘public space’ of artistic practices ruled by

in Foucault’s theatres
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Signing off
Niall Carson

those few satirical-lyrical novels that are all I now want to do.4 To the generation that grew to maturity with The Bell, such an opinion would have been clearly wrong. For them, The Bell stood as a herald for the vanguard of cultural change and as a strong voice of liberal secularism against the perceived hegemony of the Church and state, although if its editors saw it as that is not so clear. However, Ireland had changed dramatically in the fourteen years since The Bell first opened its pages to ‘Gentile or Jew, Protestant or Catholic, priest or layman’ to evaluate

in Rebel by vocation