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Solving Shakespeare’s riddles in The Comedy of Errors, Romeo and Juliet, King John, 1–2 Henry IV, The Merchant of Venice, Henry V, Julius Caesar, Othello, Macbeth and Cymberline
Author: Steve Sohmer

Knowing William Shakespeare better, we are better equipped to know his plays. Better knowing his plays brings us closer to knowing him. This book suggests that Shakespeare wrote not only for the mass audience, but simultaneously for that stratum of cognoscenti whom Gabriel Harvey dubbed 'the wiser sort.' It identifies many passages in the plays which Shakespeare resolves famous cruces which scholars have never been able to unravel, and casts new light on Shakespeare's mind and method. Shakespeare wrote into Julius Caesar more than one passage intelligible only to that handful of the wiser sort who had read Plutarch and knew their Suetonius. Into Macbeth Shakespeare injected a detail accessible only to the few intrepid souls brave or reckless enough to have cast the horoscope of King James I. We find a poem in Hamlet, where the prince invites his love and bandies matters of cosmology which were burning issues (literally) throughout Shakespeare's lifetime. While Julius Caesar's old Julian calendar prevailed in England its rival, the scientifically correct Gregorian reformed calendar, dominated most of Europe. Shakespeare suffused his plays with references to calendrical anomalies, as seen in Othello. By relating Shakespeare's texts, the Renaissance calendars and the liturgy, the book produces a lexicon apt for parsing the time-riddles in Romeo and Juliet. Shakespeare handled religious subjects, examined and interrogated the dogmas of the received religions, and parodied the Crucifixion by exploiting Holinshed's account of the persecution and assassination of York.

The debate over the Immaculate Conception
Carol Engelhardt Herringer

Conflict over the Immaculate Conception was one part of the debate about theology among Victorian Christians; it was also an aspect of the conversation about the nature of woman. Roman Catholics, who were required to believe in the Immaculate Conception, defined a woman who was unchanging in her sinlessness, while Protestants asserted that sinfulness was integral to each human being. This key moment in Victorian religious history, which has been largely overlooked, shows how English Christians reacted to a religious dogma with no direct scriptural evidence. This controversial topic was the one most likely to encourage broad participation from non-Anglican Protestants. Roman Catholics had a generally positive response, especially after some initial hesitation, but Protestants resoundingly rejected it. Advanced Anglicans were ambivalent: many believed the Virgin Mary to be without sin but were hesitant to declare dogmatic a belief with no scriptural basis. This debate also helps illuminate attitudes of Victorian Christians about the relationship between sexual intercourse, the body, and sin.

in Victorians and the Virgin Mary
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Encountering Irigaray
Morny Joy

the principal motivation that has informed my writing of these studies on Irigaray. The questions that intrigue me as a philosopher of religion concern Irigaray’s challenge to traditional religious dogmas and practices. I have selected facets of Irigaray’s oeuvre that have not been treated in great detail elsewhere. It is the theme of love, specifically a love that is divine, that resonates in Irigaray’s ethical and spiritual work. This focus takes it beyond the principally psychoanalytic and secular interests that have been the centre of most of the past attention

in Divine love
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John Lever and Johan Fischer

about kosher than their Danish counterparts. This is most likely due to the fact that kosher markets are large and expanding in the UK, with many Jewish groups 171 172 Re l igi on , r e g ul at i on , c onsumpt ion living in increasingly bounded neighbourhoods, where Jewish identity is to a large extent maintained and developed through increasingly strict forms of kosher supervision and consumption. In Denmark the relatively small Jewish community is more dispersed, and here more of our informants saw kosher as religious dogma. There are many similarities between

in Religion, regulation, consumption
Rethinking art, media, and the audio-visual contract
Author: Ming-Yuen S. Ma

There is no soundtrack is a specific yet expansive study of sound tactics deployed in experimental media art today. It analyses how audio and visual elements interact and produce meaning, drawing from works by contemporary media artists ranging from Chantal Akerman, to Nam June Paik, to Tanya Tagaq. It then links these analyses to discussions on silence, voice, noise, listening, the soundscape, and other key ideas in sound studies. In making these connections, the book argues that experimental media art – avant-garde film, video art, performance, installation, and hybrid forms – produces radical and new audio-visual relationships that challenge and destabilize the visually-dominated fields of art history, contemporary art criticism, cinema and media studies, and cultural studies as well as the larger area of the human sciences. This book directly addresses what sound studies scholar Jonathan Sterne calls ‘visual hegemony’. It joins a growing body of interdisciplinary scholarship that is collectively sonifying the study of culture while defying the lack of diversity within the field by focusing on practitioners from transnational and diverse backgrounds. Therefore, the media artists discussed in this book are of interest to scholars and students who are exploring aurality in related disciplines including gender and feminist studies, queer studies, ethnic studies, postcolonial studies, urban studies, environmental analysis, and architecture. As such, There Is No Soundtrack makes meaningful connections between previously disconnected bodies of scholarship to build new, more complex and reverberating frameworks for the study of art, media, and sound.

Exploring gender, anti-racism, and homonormativity in Shamim Sarif ’s The World Unseen (2001) and I Can’t Think Straight (2008)
Alberto Fernández Carbajal

relationship with Hani and is forced to leave Leyla. However, Leyla’s eyes have been opened by her affair with Tala to the inexorability of her same-sex desire and she sees no way back to Ali or to pretending to be heterosexual. She decides to ‘come out’ to her family, and will eventually persuade Tala to do the same, as an immoveable condition of their relationship. Familial responses to their homosexuality constitute a typical assemblage of mainstream religious dogma and internalised Western homophobia. Leyla stuns her mother, Maya, by proclaiming

in Queer Muslim diasporas in contemporary literature and film
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Speculations of morality and spirituality in Arthur Conan Doyle’s writings
David Beck

engage in serious religious contemplation, his speculation upon the need for deduction in religious analysis is influenced by Bell’s observational method. Holmes states, ‘[t]here is nothing in which deduction is so necessary as in religion […] It can be built up as an exact science by the reasoner’ ( ibid. : 686). This was a key note of Doyle’s early religious questioning, stressing the importance of an un-blinkered study and reflection upon religious dogma. Uncharacteristically, Holmes continues: Our highest assurance of the goodness of

in Tattoos in crime and detective narratives
Atheism and polygenesis
Nathan G. Alexander

ideas that demonstrated the inferiority of non-white people in an arena free from religious dogma.50 Hunt’s racial ideas were strongly influenced by Robert Knox, a promising Edinburgh anatomy lecturer who was disgraced by unknowingly accepting bodies of murder victims for his anatomy classes. Knox initially enjoyed 37 Race in a Godless World a thriving career, but after the scandal – though officially exonerated of any wrongdoing – he became unemployable.51 This gave him free rein to publish his controversial racial views since he no longer had to worry about

in Race in a Godless World
François Burgat

whom we thought to keep calling what they called themselves: “Islamists.” Whether these were moderate or radical—and whether they rose through elections or as armed guerrilla groups. Roy, meanwhile, unshakably repeated his thesis that they belonged to the past—terminologically at least. To Roy, the rising battalions of “beardies” were an avatar of the latest in the crowded field of “post-” concepts: “post-Islamism.” They had, he felt, abandoned the hope of applying a literalist reading of their religious dogma in the political field. I in

in Understanding Political Islam
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William Morris’s News from Nowhere and Chaucer’s dream visions
John M. Ganim

character of fiction, an allegory of Life. Through renunciation both of established politics and of religious dogma, the Nowherians seem to have regressed, in an historical perspective, to a pre-capitalist, even a pre-Christian era, indeed to the legendary period when the Western world was inhabited by humans and fairies living in harmony.16 Laurent suggests that Morris engages in a kind of word-painting of landscapes in the novel, akin to how the visual arts successfully merge the moral and the political qualities of buildings and 192 Contemporary Chaucer across the

in Contemporary Chaucer across the centuries