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Europe: Volume 2: A Literary History, 1348-1418 (Hardback)
  • Europe: Volume 2: A Literary History, 1348-1418 (Hardback)
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Europe: Volume 2: A Literary History, 1348-1418 (Hardback)

(editor)
£127.50
Hardback 896 Pages / Published: 14/04/2016
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This collaborative two-volume literary history of Europe, the first yet attempted, unfolds through ten sequences of places linked by trade, travel, topography, language, pilgrimage, alliance, disease, and artistic exchange. The period covered, 1348-1418, provides deep context for understanding current developments in Europe, particularly as initiated by the destruction and disasters of World War II. We begin with the greatest of all European catastrophes: the 1348 bubonic plague, which killed one person in three. Literary cultures helped speed recovery from this unprecedented 'ground zero' experience, providing solace, distraction, and new ideals to live by. Questions of where Europe begins and ends, then as now, and disputes over whom truly 'belongs' on European soil are explored, if not solved, through writing. A war that would last for a century convulsed much of western Europe. Divisions between Orthodox and Roman Catholic Christianities endured, and in 1378 the West divided again between popes of Avignon and Rome. Arabic literary cultures linked Fes and Granada to Jerusalem and Damascus; Persian and Turkish writings began to flourish south and west of Constantinople; Jewish intellectuals treasured Arabic texts as well as Hebrew writings; Armenian colophons proved unique. From 1414-18 western nations gathered to heal their papal schism while also exchanging literary, humanist, and musical ideas; visitors from the East hoped for commitment to wider European peace. Freed from nation state historiography, as bequeathed by the nineteenth century, these 82 chapters freshly assess the free movement of European literature in all its variety, local peculiarity, and regenerative power.

Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780199580026
Number of pages: 896
Weight: 1948 g
Dimensions: 251 x 187 x 50 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
This project is a major achievement, one that will be of tremendous use to scholars in the area. It succeeds in responding to the contemporary challenges to the identity of Europe as a political entity, seen most dramatically perhaps in the turmoil over the Brexit vote... It is particularly valuable for bringing out cultural differences in areas usually treated as being essentially homogeneous, and, conversely, in emphasising the power of lines of economic and literary exchange in binding together points of production not usually associated with each other. * Ethan Knapp (Ohio State University), The Spenser Review *
These modern examples, again instances of literary production and response that have to be read in terms of places and layerings, illustrate the key aspect that the book so wonderfully brings to our attention: literature is produced in places that are saturated with text, character, and experience; and these texts migrate, get archived, become parts of libraries and collections, and generate readers and texts in these very places, welcoming itinerant materials and engaging with them. What happens to the reader who dwells in this richness is both a defamiliarization, with regard to established temporal and topographical patterns, and a newfamiliarity with the landscapes and the configurations that make literatures and literary imagination emerge. * Marisa Galvez, Speculum *

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