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Print and Protestantism in Early Modern England (Hardback)
  • Print and Protestantism in Early Modern England (Hardback)
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Print and Protestantism in Early Modern England (Hardback)

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£190.00
Hardback 716 Pages / Published: 02/11/2000
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In this highly innovative study, Ian Green examines the complete array of Protestant titles published in England from the 1530s to the 1720s. These range from the large specialist volumes at the top to cheap tracts at the bottom, from radical on one wing to conservative on the other, and from instructive and devotional manuals to edifying-cum-entertaining works such as religious verse and cautionary tales. Wherever possible the author adopts a statistical approach to permit a focus on those works which sold most copies over a number of years, and in an annotated Appendix provides a brief description of over seven hundred best selling or steady selling religious titles of the period. A close study of these texts and the forms in which they were offered to the public suggests a rapid diversification of both the types of work published and of the readerships at which they were targeted. It also demonstrates shrewd publishers' frequent attempts to plug gaps in a rapidly expanding market. Where previous studies of print have tended to focus on the polemical and the sensational, this one highlights the didactic, devotional, and consensual elements found in most steady selling works. It is also suggested that in these works there were at least three Protestantisms on offer an orthodox, clerical version, a moralistic, rational version favoured by the educated laity, and a popular version that was barely Protestant at all and that the impact of these probably varied both within and between different readerships. These conclusions shed much light not only on the means by which English Protestantism was disseminated, but also on the doctrinally and culturally diffused nature of English Protestantism by the end of the Stuart period. Both the text and the appendix should prove invaluable to anyone interested in the history of the Reformation or in printing as a medium of education and communication in early modern England.

Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780198208600
Number of pages: 716
Weight: 1188 g
Dimensions: 242 x 166 x 42 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
... the book repeatedly opens up fruitful lines of enquiry. Its great value is to be found in the extraordinary richness of its data and in its recovery of a mainstream culture largely neglected because neither radical nor innovative. It is a work to which constant reference will be made for the foreseeable future by anyone working on early modern print culture. * Albion *
Fellow scholars will recognize Green's labors as a monument of scholarly endeavor. His wide view provides context for the study of English religion in the period and henceforth students of this religious literature will do well to begin here. His book is rich with valuable detail about publishers, authors and readers ... this is an impressive and significant contribution to the study of early modern English Protestantism. * Sixteenth Century Journal *
Green provides the first truly comprehensive overview of reformed print culture in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, and his book should be required reading for anyone interested in literacy and literate culture in the period. * Years Work in English Studies *
A handsome volume in the very best tradition of the OUP. * Reformation *
Green's book is a significant addition to English Reformation 'revisionism', and its tour through the 'steady sellers' of early modern England is both authoritative and enlightening. * Journal of Ecclesiastical History *
Impressively researched and exhaustively documented survey ... a work of admirable and meticulous scholarship. It will be an invaluable guide to historians and bibliographers for many years to come, an authoritative aid to the combined STCs which many of us will find ourselves constantly consulting. * History *
In demonstrating that divinity dominated the output of the printing presses until the eighteenth century, Green also provides a salutary corrective to accounts which overestimate the speed of secularization and the impact of Englightenment scepticism. * History *
This is a thorough and significant book ... it is the best kind of academic writing, lucid, free of jargon, trenchant but fair, and courteous to other scholars; it illuminates every subject that it touches upon and is knit together by a strong and important argument. * Journal of Theological Studies *
Ian Green brings to the job an impressive knowledge of different genres and a sensitivity in the reading of individual works: his every judgement seems authoritative ... The very scale of his work carries conviction. * Journal of Theological Studies *
This is an ambitious work of profound scholarship ... an extraordinary achievement in the making, the scholarly equivalent of walking to both poles. * Patrick Collinson, The Times Literary Supplement *
The book is a mass of information ... I would hazard that no other historian has an encyclopaedic a knowledge of printed English religious literature as Green has for this lengthy period. * English Historical Review *

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