Writing and Religion in England, 1558-1689: Studies in Community-Making and Cultural Memory

Writing and Religion in England, 1558-1689: Studies in Community-Making and Cultural Memory

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The fruit of intensive collaboration among leading international specialists on the literature, religion and culture of early modern England, this volume examines the relationship between writing and religion in England from 1558, the year of the Elizabethan Settlement, up until the Act of Toleration of 1689. Throughout these studies, religious writing is broadly taken as being 'communicational' in the etymological sense: that is, as a medium which played a significant role in the creation or consolidation of communities. Some texts shaped or reinforced one particular kind of religious identity, whereas others fostered communities which cut across the religious borderlines which prevailed in other areas of social interaction. For a number of the scholars writing here, such communal differences correlate with different ways of drawing on the resources of cultural memory.

The denominational spectrum covered ranges from several varieties of Dissent, through via media Anglicanism, to Laudianism and Roman Catholicism, and there are also glances towards heresy and the mid-seventeenth century's new atheism. With respect to the range of different genres examined, the volume spans the gamut from poetry, fictional prose, drama, court masque, sermons, devotional works, theological treatises, confessions of faith, church constitutions, tracts, and letters, to history-writing and translation.

Arranged in roughly chronological order, Writing and Religion in England, 1558-1689 presents chapters which explore religious writing within the wider contexts of culture, ideas, attitudes, and law, as well as studies which concentrate more on the texts and readerships of particular writers. Several contributors embrace an inter-arts orientation, relating writing to liturgical ceremony, painting, music and architecture, while others opt for a stronger sociological slant, explicitly emphasizing the role of women writers and of writers from different sub-cultural backgrounds.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781409475590
Publisher: Ashgate Publishing Ltd
Publication date: 04/28/2013
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 19 MB
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About the Author

Roger D. Sell is H.W. Donner Research Professor of Literary Communication at Åbo Akademi University, Finland. He has published widely on authors from every period of English literature, and has developed an account of literature as one among other forms of communication. His main aim here has been to support literary scholars trying to mediate between writers and readers who are differently situated, and to provide a framework for the ethical critique of both authors and their readers. His work in progress includes a scholarly edition of the complete poems of Sir John Beaumont, and books on literary-communicational criticism and Shakespearian communication.
Anthony W. Johnson is Professor and Head of English at Oulu University, Finland. His special areas of interest - Renaissance Interarts and Imagology - are reflected in a wide range of critical works and editions including: Ben Jonson: Poetry and Architecture (1994), Three Books Annotated by Inigo Jones (1997), William Cavendish's Country Captain (1999), and John Boys's Fasti Cantuarianses (2009). Forthcoming work includes a book on cultural imagology and an introduction to Ben Jonson for the Writers and their Work new series.

Roger D. Sell, Anthony W. Johnson, Alan P.F. Sell, Arthur F. Marotti, Lars-Håkan Svensson, Åke Bergvall, Thomas Rist, A.D. Cousins, Maria Salenius, Anthony W. Johnson, Gunilla Florby, Graham Parry, Helen Wilcox, Alison Shell, Sharon Achinstein, Achsah Guibbory, Reid Barbour, Nigel Smith, Nicholas von Maltzahn, David Robertson, Harold Love.

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction, Roger D. Sell and Anthony W. Johnson; Part I Oppositions, 1558–1689: Varieties of English separatist and dissenting writings, Alan P.F. Sell; The intolerability of English Catholicism, Arthur F. Marotti. Part II Negotiations, 1558–1631: Imitation and cultural memory in Spenser's The Faerie Queene, Lars-Håkan Svensson; Religion as contention and community-making in The Faerie Queene, Book I, Åke Bergvall; Shakespeare now and then: communities, religion, reception, Thomas Rist; Satire III and the Satires: John Donne on true religion, memory, and community, A.D. Cousins; '… those marks are upon me': John Donne's sermons for a community in transition, Maria Salenius; Jonson's eirenic community: the case of The Masque of Augurs (1622), Anthony W. Johnson; Sir John Beaumont and his 3 audiences, Roger D. Sell; Bridging gaps: Elizabeth Cary as translator and historian, Gunilla Florby. Part III Complications, c.1632–89: High church devotion in the Church of England 1620–42, Graham Parry; In the Temple precincts: George Herbert and 17th-century community-making, Helen Wilcox; Divine muses, Catholic poets and pilgrims to St Winifred's Well: literary communities in Francis Chetwinde's 'New Hellicon' (1642) in context, Alison Shell; John Milton and the communities of resistance, 1641–42, Sharon Achinstein; England's 'Biblical' prophets, 1642–60, Achsah Guibbory; Atheists, monsters, plagues, and Jews: tares in the garden of Thomas Browne's Padua, 1632, Reid Barbour; Poetry, heresy and place, Nigel Smith; Ruining the sacred truths? Marvell's Milton and cultural memory, Nicholas von Maltzahn. Part IV Accommodations, 1558–1689: Incensed over incense: incense and community in 17th-century literature, David Robertson; The religious traditions of the North and L'Estrange families, Harold Love; Select bibliography; Index.

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