The "Purple Island" and Anatomy in Early Seventeenth-century Literature, Philosophy, and Theology (Hardback)Peter Mitchell (author)
Hardback 718 Pages / Published: 30/11/2007
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This book sets out to reconstruct and analyze the rationality of Phineas Fletcher's use of figurality in "The Purple Island" (1633) - a poetic allegory of human anatomy. To this end, textual analyses of "The Purple Island" lead via bibliographical, biographical, conceptual, formal, and linguistic connections to other works of literature, natural philosophy and theology, and to anatomical demonstrations. By these means the book demonstrates that the analogies and metaphors of literary works share coherence and consistency with anatomy textbooks, but more than any others, Fletcher's work explores hidden aspects of this figurality and creatively develops the metaphor of "Man" as an island.Developing upon the coherence of anatomical metaphors in the body's creation, mortality, and salvation, Fletcher's poem provides a verbally constituted form of ocular evidence for believing in the divine promise of a full recovery of the image of God at the resurrection of the body. But contrary to the prevalent view, the religious allegory is not incongruous with the conceptual character of the anatomy taken from Vesalius, nor with that which is consistent with Harvey's Lumleian lectures to the College of Physicians. Peter Mitchell is Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Wales Lampeter.
Publisher: Associated University Presses
Number of pages: 718
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