Romanticism and Religion from William Cowper to Wallace Stevens

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Routledge, 2016 M04 8 - 272 pages
The relationship between literature and religion is one of the most groundbreaking and challenging areas of Romantic studies. Covering the entire field of Romanticism from its eighteenth-century origins in the writing of William Cowper and its proleptic stirrings in Paradise Lost to late-twentieth-century manifestations in the work of Wallace Stevens, the essays in this timely volume explore subjects such as Romantic attitudes towards creativity and its relation to suffering and religious apprehension; the allure of the 'veiled' and the figure of the monk in Gothic and Romantic writing; Miltonic light and inspiration in the work of Blake, Wordsworth, Shelley, and Keats; the relationship between Southey's and Coleridge's anti-Catholicism and definitions of religious faith in the Romantic period; the stammering of Romantic attempts to figure the ineffable; the emergence of a feminised Christianity and a gendered sublime; the development of Calvinism and its role in contemporary religious controversies. Its primary focus is the canonical Romantic poets, with a particular emphasis on Byron, whose work is most in need of critical re-evaluation given its engagement with the Christian and Islamic worlds and its critique of totalising religious and secular readings. The collection is an original and much-needed intervention in Romantic studies, bringing together the contextual awareness of recent historicist scholarship with the newly awakened interest in matters of form and an appreciation of the challenges of postmodern theory.

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Contents

Notes on Contributors
Milton and
Self Nature Society
Wordsworths Faithful
Southey Coleridge and English
Byron
Chalmers and the Scottish Religious Heritage
Byrons Confessional Pilgrimage
Scepticism and the Voice of Poetry
Ghostly Closure and Comic
Hopkins Keats and the Gratuity of Grace
Percy Bysshe
Sacred Art and Profane Poets
Stevenss Esthétique du Mal Evil
Bibliography
Index

The Diction of Don Juan

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About the author (2016)

Gavin Hopps is Academic Fellow in the School of Divinity, University of St Andews, UK. Jane Stabler is Reader in Romanticism in the School of English, University of St Andrews, UK.

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