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Look Inside Ceremony and Community from Herbert to Milton

Ceremony and Community from Herbert to Milton
Literature, Religion and Cultural Conflict in Seventeenth-Century England

  • Date Published: January 1998
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9780521593557


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About the Authors
  • This book examines the relationship between literature and religious conflict in seventeenth-century England, showing how literary texts grew out of and addressed the contemporary controversy over ceremonial worship. Examining the meaning and function of religion in seventeenth-century England, the book shows that the conflicts over religious ceremony which were central to the English Revolution had broad cultural significance; they involved not only conflicting attitudes towards art and the body, but a clash between different ways of constructing social relations, human identity, and the relation of the Protestant present to the Jewish, pagan and Catholic past. Achsah Guibbory's readings of Herbert, Herrick, Browne, Donne and Milton explain how their writings show what was at stake in the conflict over ceremonial worship, and how different ideas of community turned on that conflict.

    • Historically contextual rereading of major seventeenth-century poets, shedding new light on their work
    • Addresses notions of ceremony and community, much discussed in current historical and cultural debates
    • Explores the symbolic, cultural significance of the religious conflicts that were an important part of the English Revolution
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    Reviews & endorsements

    '… painstaking research into religious controversy.' The Times Literary Supplement

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    Product details

    • Date Published: January 1998
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9780521593557
    • length: 292 pages
    • dimensions: 236 x 159 x 21 mm
    • weight: 0.535kg
    • contains: 1 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    2. Reading the conflicts: ceremony, ideology and the meaning of religion
    3. George Herbert: devotion in The Temple and the art of contradiction
    4. Robert Herrick: religious experience in the 'Temple' of Hesperides
    5. Sir Thomas Browne: the promiscuous embrace of ritual order
    6. John Milton: carnal idolatry and the reconfiguration of worship, part I, 1634–1660
    7. John Milton: carnal idolatry and the reconfiguration of worship, part II, after the Restoration: the major poems

  • Author

    Achsah Guibbory, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

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