Genealogies of Genius

Author: Joyce E. Chaplin
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 113749767X
Format: PDF, Docs
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The essays in this volume seek to examine the uses to which concepts of genius have been put in different cultures and times. Collectively, they are designed to make two new statements. First, seen in historical and comparative perspective, genius is not a natural fact and universal human constant that has been only recently identified by modern science, but instead a categorical mode of assessing human ability and merit. Second, as a concept with specific definitions and resonances, genius has performed specific cultural work within each of the societies in which it had a historical presence.

Genealogies of Genius

Author: Joyce E. Chaplin
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 113749767X
Format: PDF, Mobi
Download Now
The essays in this volume seek to examine the uses to which concepts of genius have been put in different cultures and times. Collectively, they are designed to make two new statements. First, seen in historical and comparative perspective, genius is not a natural fact and universal human constant that has been only recently identified by modern science, but instead a categorical mode of assessing human ability and merit. Second, as a concept with specific definitions and resonances, genius has performed specific cultural work within each of the societies in which it had a historical presence.

A Cultural History of the British Census

Author: K. Levitan
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 0230337600
Format: PDF, ePub
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The book explores the hotly disputed process by which the census was created and developed and examines how a wide cast of characters, including statisticians, novelists, national and local officials, political and social reformers, and journalists responded to and used the idea of a census.

Let There Be Enlightenment

Author: Anton M. Matytsin
Publisher: JHU Press
ISBN: 1421426021
Format: PDF, Mobi
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According to most scholars, the Enlightenment was a rational awakening, a radical break from a past dominated by religion and superstition. But in Let There Be Enlightenment, Anton M. Matytsin, Dan Edelstein, and the contributors they have assembled deftly undermine this simplistic narrative. Emphasizing the ways in which religious beliefs and motivations shaped philosophical perspectives, essays in this book highlight figures and topics often overlooked in standard genealogies of the Enlightenment. The volume underscores the prominent role that religious discourses continued to play in major aspects of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century thought. The essays probe a wide range of subjects, from reformer Jan Amos Comenius’s quest for universal enlightenment to the changing meanings of the light metaphor, Quaker influences on Baruch Spinoza’s theology, and the unexpected persistence of Aristotle in the Enlightenment. Exploring the emergence of historical consciousness among Enlightenment thinkers while examining their repeated insistence on living in an enlightened age, the collection also investigates the origins and the long-term dynamics of the relationship between faith and reason. Providing an overview of the rich spectrum of eighteenth-century culture, the authors demonstrate that religion was central to Enlightenment thought. The term "enlightenment" itself had a deeply religious connotation. Rather than revisiting the celebrated breaks between the eighteenth century and the period that preceded it, Let There Be Enlightenment reveals the unacknowledged continuities that connect the Enlightenment to its various antecedents. Contributors: Philippe Buc, William J. Bulman, Jeffrey D. Burson, Charly Coleman, Dan Edelstein, Matthew T. Gaetano, Howard Hotson, Anton M. Matytsin, Darrin M. McMahon, James Schmidt, Céline Spector, Jo Van Cauter

Divine Fury

Author: Darrin M. McMahon
Publisher: Basic Books
ISBN: 0465069916
Format: PDF, ePub
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Genius. The word connotes an almost unworldly power: the power to create, to grasp universal secrets, even to destroy. As renowned intellectual historian Darrin McMahon explains in Divine Fury, the concept of genius can be traced back to antiquity, when men of great insight were thought to be advised by demons. The modern idea of genius emerged in tension with a growing belief in human equality; contesting the notion that all are created equal, geniuses served to dramatize the exception of extraordinary individuals not governed by ordinary laws. Today, the idea of genius has become cheapened—rock stars and football coaches earn the term with seemingly the same ease as astrophysicists and philosophers—yet our enduring fascination with it reflects the desires, needs, and fears of ordinary human beings. The first comprehensive history of this mysterious yet foundational concept, Divine Fury follows the fortunes of genius from Socrates to Napoleon to Einstein and beyond, analyzing its democratization, disappearance, and potential rebirth.

The Myth of the Medieval Jewish Moneylender

Author: Julie L. Mell
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 3319341863
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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This book challenges a common historical narrative, which portrays medieval Jews as moneylenders who filled an essential economic role in Europe. Where Volume I traced the development of the narrative in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and refuted it with an in-depth study of English Jewry, Volume II explores the significance of dissolving the Jewish narrative for European history. It extends the study from England to northern France, the Mediterranean, and central Europe and deploys the methodologies of legal, cultural, and religious history alongside economic history. Each chapter offers a novel interpretation of key topics, such as the Christian usury campaign, the commercial revolution, and gift economy / profit economy, to demonstrate how the revision of Jewish history leads to new insights in European history.

The Idea of the West

Author: Alastair Bonnett
Publisher: Macmillan International Higher Education
ISBN: 0230212336
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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The West is on everyone's lips: it is defended, celebrated, hated. But how and why did it emerge? And whose idea is it? This book is about representations of the West. Drawing on sources from across the world - from Russia to Japan, Iran to Britain - it argues that the West is not merely a Western idea but something that many people around the world have long been creating and stereotyping. The Idea of the West looks at how the great political and ethnic forces of the last century defined themselves in relation to the West, addresses how Soviet communism, 'Asian spirituality', 'Asian values' and radical Islamism used and deployed images of the West. Both topical and wide-ranging, it offers an accessible but provocative portrait of a fascinating subject and it charts the complex relationship between whiteness and the West.

Rethinking Modern European Intellectual History

Author: Darrin M. McMahon
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199769249
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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This book is a collection of essays by leading practitioners of modern European intellectual history, reflecting on the theoretical and methodological underpinnings of the field. The essays each attempt to assess their respective disciplines, giving an account of their development and theoretical evolution, while also reflecting on current problems, challenges, and possibilities.

Poetics of Self and Form in Keats and Shelley

Author: Mark Sandy
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1351910663
Format: PDF, Docs
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Beginning with a reassessment of contemporary romantic studies, this book provides a modern critical comparison of Keats and Shelley. The study offers detailed close readings of a variety of literary genres (including the romance, lyric, elegy and literary fragment) adopted by Keats and Shelley to explore their poetic treatment of self and form. The poetic careers of Keats and Shelley embrace a tragic affirmation of those darker elements latent in the earlier writings to meditate on their own posthumous reception and reputation. Fresh readings of Keats and Shelley show how they conceive of the self as fictional and anticipate Nietzsche's modern theories of subjectivity. Nietzsche's conception of the subject as a site of conflicting fictions usefully measures this emergent sense of poetic self and form in Keats and Shelley. This Nietzschean perspective enriches our appreciation of the considerable artistic achievement of these two significant second-generation romantic poets.