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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'.

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Art and destruction

Solvent form examines the destruction of art—through objects that have been destroyed (lost in fires, floods, vandalism, or similarly those artists that actively court or represent this destruction, such as Gustav Metzger), but also as a process within art that the object courts through form. In this manner, Solvent form looks to events such as the Momart warehouse fire in 2004 as well as the actions of art thief Stéphane Breitwieser in which the stolen work was destroyed. Against this overlay, a tendency is mapped whereby individuals attempt to conceptually gather these destroyed or lost objects, to somehow recoup in their absence. From this vantage, Solvent form—hinging on the dual meaning in the words solvent and solvency—proposes an idea of art as an attempt to secure and fix, which correspondingly undoes and destroys through its inception. It also weaves a narrative of art that intermingles with Jean Baudrillard’s ideas on disappearance, Georges Bataille and Paul Virilio’s negative or reverse miracle, Jean-Luc Nancy’s concept of the image (or imago as votive that keeps present the past, yet also burns), and Giorgio Agamben’s notion of art as an attempt to make the moment appear permeable. Likewise, it is through these destructions that one might distinguish a solvency within art and catch an operation in which something is made visible through these moments of destruction when art’s metaphorical undoing emerges as oddly literal.

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Jared Pappas-Kelley

3 Solvent form Trying to make the moment permeable, the art impulse yields forms that are likewise solvent. It is this intersection of permeability that the destroyed object prompts most overtly. Crossing an expansive moment when form is most solvent, to be here and yet not, solvent in terms of capable of undoing (dissolving) yet also in the sense of solvency, to make secure and firm. Therefore, in this an art object points to itself, as well as to what is imperceptible and distinct, ensnaring us both in the cascading of the moment and in prolonging this

in Solvent form
Author: Susanne Becker

The gothic has, for two hundred years, played an important role in female culture; and worked early on to feminise established literary forms and has, throughout its history, strongly challenged established notions of femininity. Neo-gothicism reflects the feminine dimensions of the ongoing cultural and literary change: gothic horror addresses 'gendered' problems of everyday life. This book focuses on the narrative and ideological components that shape gothic fictions as feminine forms. It explores the classic texts of two hundred years of gothicism on three levels. The first is their contextualising of the specific cultural-historical situation that they both come from and address. The second is their narrative texture, marked by a complex subjectivity; and third, the inter-textualisation of feminine gothic writing. Alice Munro's Lives of Girls and Women uses gothic contextualising to tell a gothic story of growing up, and Margaret Atwood's Lady Oracle parodically incorporates gothic texture. The gothicism of Aritha van Herk's No Fixed Address relies very much on the Canadian landscape, and points to the intersection of neo-gothicism and Canadian culture. Lynne Tillman's Haunted Houses is a fictional braid of three gothic life stories of girls growing up in contemporary Brooklyn; the 'haunted houses' of the title are their bodies that are not born but becoming women. Dress, a classic feminine gothic sign for both propriety and property, is shown in the postmodern context as thematic enclosure of the body as well as formal enclosure of the story.

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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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John Corner

2 Form Whereas ‘power’ is a term taking us immediately to the contested centre of media research and debate, including that conducted outside the academic sphere, the notion of ‘form’ is far less certain in its indications. To talk beyond the academy, and even at points within it, about enquiry into form is to invite a degree of suspicion. Around the notion of form in respect of the media there is often the sense of something elusive and possibly of secondary significance to what really needs to be known more about. Formal analysis suggests a carrying over of

in Theorising Media
Pacifist feminism in Britain, 1870–1902
Author: Heloise Brown

This book explores the pervasive influence of pacifism on Victorian feminism. It provides an account of Victorian women who campaigned for peace, and of the many feminists who incorporated pacifist ideas into their writing on women and gender. The book explores feminists' ideas about the role of women within the empire, their eligibility for citizenship, and their ability to act as moral guardians in public life. It shows that such ideas made use – in varying ways – of gendered understandings of the role of force and the relevance of arbitration and other pacifist strategies. The book examines the work of a wide range of individuals and organisations, from well-known feminists such as Lydia Becker, Josephine Butler and Millicent Garrett Fawcett to lesser-known figures such as the Quaker pacifists Ellen Robinson and Priscilla Peckover.

Susanne Becker

PART I Gothic forms – feminine texts But what, then, is feminine about the gothic? Addressing the question of the ‘feminine text’ still means stepping on shifting ground. The terms of discussion were first laid out in the 1970s between the author-centred model that excludes male artists, but also many differences between female

in Gothic Forms of Feminine Fictions
Heloise Brown

priscilla peckover 5 Priscilla Peckover and the ‘truest form of patriotism’ 1 A s an organisation with a stated commitment to absolute pacifism, the Peace Society experienced considerable difficulties in working with non-absolutists. The problems were caused by divisions over the role of Christianity in peace principles, and the question of whether some wars could be justified. Indeed, a study of the Peace Society in this period suggests that it was simply impractical to expect pacifists divided by this principle to work together. Yet the work of one of the

in ‘The truest form of patriotism’
Feminist journals and peace questions
Heloise Brown

‘ the truest form of patriotism ’ 2 ‘The women of the whole world form . . . a unity’: feminist journals and peace questions1 T hrough the debates on physical force, many women active in the feminist movement were drawn to consider wider issues of military conflict and war. Such well-known feminists as Josephine Butler, Millicent Garrett Fawcett, Lydia Becker, Caroline Ashurst Biggs (editor of the Englishwoman’s Review from 1871 to 1889) and Henrietta Müller (editor of the Women’s Penny Paper from 1888 to 1892) intervened in debates about the role of the armed

in ‘The truest form of patriotism’