During the Protestant Reformation, Martin Luther instituted new ideologies addressing gender, marriage, chastity, and religious life that threatened Catholic monasticism. Yet many living in cloistered religious communities, particularly women, refused to accept these new terms and were successful in their opposition to the new Protestant culture.
Focusing primarily on a group of Dominican nuns in Strasbourg, Germany, Amy Leonard's Nails in the Wall outlines the century-long battle between these nuns and the Protestant city council. With savvy strategies that employed charm, wealth, and political and social connections, the nuns were able to sustain their Catholic practices. Leonard's in-depth archival research uncovers letters about and records of the nuns' struggle to maintain their religious beliefs and way of life in the face of Protestant reforms. She tells the story of how they worked privately to keep Catholicism alive-continuing to pray in Latin, smuggling in priests to celebrate Mass, and secretly professing scores of novices to ensure the continued survival of their convents. This fascinating and heartening study shows that, far from passively allowing the Protestants to dismantle their belief system, the women of the Strasbourg convents were active participants in the battle over their vocation and independence.
Written as the Lombard kingdom was on the cusp of downfall at the hands of the Carolingian empire, the works of Paul the Deacon (c. 720-799) are vital to understanding the history of Italy and Western Europe in the Middle Ages. But until now, scholars have tended to neglect the narrative structure of his texts, which reflect in important ways his personal responses to the events of his time. This study presents fresh interpretations of Paul's Historia Romana, Vita Sancti Gregorii Magni, Gesta Episcopum Mettensium, and Historia Langobardorum by focusing on him as an individual and on his strategies of argumentation, ultimately advancing a new conception of Paul as a dynamic author whose development of multiple lines of thought deserves closer examination.
A Nation of Fliers
Peter Fritzsche Harvard University Press, 1992 Library of Congress TL526.G3F75 1992 | Dewey Decimal 629.130943
Reviews of this book: "Peter Fritzsche's unusual and enthralling history is about the most pervasive of [Germany's] dreams, the national dream of an empire of the air."
--Martin Pawley, The Guardian
"An important, thought-provoking study."
"An excellent book, beautifully written...There is really nothing quite like it in the field...Its combination of solid scholarship, appealing writing, and provocative thought makes it an important contribution to our understanding of modern German military history."
--Edward Homze, Air Power History
"A fascinating tale that provides a refreshing perspective on the history of early twentieth-century Germany, and Peter Fritzsche has told it with flair, passion, and an array of evidence taken from a wide range of little-known sources."
--Robert Wohl, German Politics and Society
"A fundamental breakthrough in the development of an understanding of how technology fed a Faustian vision of modernism in which nationalism and industrial society became ever more compatible and ever more popular...A model in its insight into the correlation of technology and the popular imagination in the twentieth century."
--Ronald Warloski, American Historical Review
"Peter Fritzsche presents a remarkable blend of technological, social, and cultural history in his study of the popular German reaction to early aviation...His findings have sizable implications for all scholars of twentieth-century Germany."
Between the years 1778 and 1784, groups that had previously been excluded from the Irish political sphere—women, Catholics, lower-class Protestants, farmers, shopkeepers, and other members of the laboring and agrarian classes—began to imagine themselves as civil subjects with a stake in matters of the state. This politicization of non-elites was largely driven by the Volunteers, a local militia force that emerged in Ireland as British troops were called away to the American War of Independence. With remarkable speed, the Volunteers challenged central features of British imperial rule over Ireland and helped citizens express a new Irish national identity.
In A Nation of Politicians, Padhraig Higgins argues that the development of Volunteer-initiated activities—associating, petitioning, subscribing, shopping, and attending celebrations—expanded the scope of political participation. Using a wide range of literary, archival, and visual sources, Higgins examines how ubiquitous forms of communication—sermons, songs and ballads, handbills, toasts, graffiti, theater, rumors, and gossip—encouraged ordinary Irish citizens to engage in the politics of a more inclusive society and consider the broader questions of civil liberties and the British Empire. A Nation of Politicians presents a fascinating tale of the beginnings of Ireland’s richly vocal political tradition at this important intersection of cultural, intellectual, social, and public history.
Winner of the Donald Murphy Prize for Distinguished First Book, American Conference for Irish Studies
A sound track of Germany in the early twentieth century might conjure military music and the voice of Adolf Hitler rising above a cheering crowd. In A National Acoustics, Brian Currid challenges this reductive characterization by investigating the transformations of music in mass culture from the Weimar Republic to the end of the Nazi regime.
Offering a nuanced analysis of how publicity was constructed through radio programming, print media, popular song, and film, Currid examines how German citizens developed an emotional investment in the nation and other forms of collectivity that were tied to the sonic experience. Reading in detail popular genres of music—the Schlager (or “hit”), so-called gypsy music, and jazz—he offers a complex view of how they played a part in the creation of German culture.
A National Acoustics contributes to a new understanding of what constitutes the public sphere. In doing so, it illustrates the contradictions between Germany’s social and cultural histories and how the technologies of recording not only were vital to the emergence of a national imaginary but also exposed the fault lines in the contested terrain of mass communication.
Brian Currid is an independent scholar who lives in Berlin.
Focusing on Japan, France, and the United States, Christopher L. Hill reveals how the writing of national history in the late nineteenth century made the reshaping of the world by capitalism and the nation-state seem natural and inevitable. The three countries, occupying widely different positions in the world, faced similar ideological challenges stemming from the rapidly changing geopolitical order and from domestic political upheavals: the Meiji Restoration in Japan, the Civil War in the United States, and the establishment of the Third Republic in France. Through analysis that is both comparative and transnational, Hill shows that the representations of national history that emerged in response to these changes reflected rhetorical and narrative strategies shared across the globe.
Delving into narrative histories, prose fiction, and social philosophy, Hill analyzes the rhetoric, narrative form, and intellectual genealogy of late-nineteenth-century texts that contributed to the creation of national history in each of the three countries. He discusses the global political economy of the era, the positions of the three countries in it, and the reasons that arguments about history loomed large in debates on political, economic, and social problems. Examining how the writing of national histories in the three countries addressed political transformations and the place of the nation in the world, Hill illuminates the ideological labor national history performed. Its production not only naturalized the division of the world by systems of states and markets, but also asserted the inevitability of the nationalization of human community; displaced dissent to pre-modern, pre-national pasts; and presented the subject’s acceptance of a national identity as an unavoidable part of the passage from youth to adulthood.
Ranging widely across countries and centuries, National Thought in Europe critically analyzes the growth of nationalism from its beginnings in medieval ethnic prejudice to the romantic era’s belief in a national soul. A fertile pan-European exchange of ideas, often rooted in literature, led to a notion of a nation’s cultural individuality that transformed the map of Europe. By looking deeply at the cultural contexts of nationalism, Joep Leerssen not only helps readers understand the continent’s past, but he also provides a surprising perspective on contemporary European identity politics.
Nationalizing a Borderland enriches understanding of ethnic conflict by examining the factors in the Austro-Hungarian province of Galicia between 1914 and 1920 that led to the rise of xenophobic nationalism and to the ethnocide of World War II. From Russian, Polish, Ukrainian, and Austrian archival sources, Prusin argues that while the violence inflicted upon Jews during that period may at first seem irrational and indiscriminate, a closer examination reveals that it was generated by traditional negative views of Jews and by the security concerns of the Russian and Polish militaries in the front zone. This violence, Prusin contends, served as a means of reshaping the socio-economic and political space of the province by diminishing Jewish cultural and economic influence.
NATO in Search of a Vision
Gülnur Aybet Georgetown University Press, 2010 Library of Congress UA646.3.A935 2010 | Dewey Decimal 355.031091821
As the NATO Alliance enters its seventh decade, it finds itself involved in an array of military missions ranging from Afghanistan to Kosovo to Sudan. It also stands at the center of a host of regional and global partnerships. Yet, NATO has still to articulate a grand strategic vision designed to determine how, when, and where its capabilities should be used, the values underpinning its new missions, and its relationship to other international actors such as the European Union and the United Nations.
The drafting of a new strategic concept, begun during NATO’s 60th anniversary summit, presents an opportunity to shape a new transatlantic vision that is anchored in the liberal democratic principles so crucial to NATO’s successes during its Cold War years. Furthermore, that vision should be focused on equipping the Alliance to anticipate and address the increasingly global and less predictable threats of the post-9/11 world.
This volume brings together scholars and policy experts from both sides of the Atlantic to examine the key issues that NATO must address in formulating a new strategic vision. With thoughtful and reasoned analysis, it offers both an assessment of NATO’s recent evolution and an analysis of where the Alliance must go if it is to remain relevant in the twenty-first century.
Caroline Ford Harvard University Press, 2016 Library of Congress GE199.F8F67 2016 | Dewey Decimal 363.700944
Challenging the conventional trope that French environmentalism arose after WWII, Caroline Ford argues that a broad environmental consciousness emerged in France much earlier. In response to war, natural disasters, and imperialism, the bourgeoisie, along with politicians, engineers, naturalists, writers, and painters, took up environmental causes.
Is Italy il bel paese—the beautiful country—where tourists spend their vacations looking for art, history, and scenery? Or is it a land whose beauty has been cursed by humanity’s greed and nature’s cruelty? The answer is largely a matter of narrative and the narrator’s vision of Italy. The fifteen essays in Nature and History in Modern Italy investigate that nation’s long experience in managing domesticated rather than wild natures and offer insight into these conflicting visions. Italians shaped their land in the most literal sense, producing the landscape, sculpting its heritage, embedding memory in nature, and rendering the two different visions inseparable. The interplay of Italy’s rich human history and its dramatic natural diversity is a subject with broad appeal to a wide range of readers.
In Nature in the New World (translated 1985),Antonello Gerbiexamines the fascinating reports of the first Europeans to see the Americas. These accounts provided the basis for the images of strange and new flora, fauna, and human creatures that filled European imaginations.
Initial chapters are devoted to the writings of Columbus, Vespucci, Cortés, Verrazzano, and others. The second portion of the book concerns the Historia general y natural de las Indias of Gonzalo Fernández de Oviedo, a work commissioned by Charles V of Spain in 1532 but not published in its entirety until the 1850s. Antonello Gerbi contends that Oviedo, a Spanish administrator who lived in Santo Domingo, has been unjustly neglected as a historian. Gerbi shows that Oviedo was a major authority on the culture, history, and conquest of the New World.
In The Nature of the Book, a tour de force of cultural history, Adrian Johns constructs an entirely original and vivid picture of print culture and its many arenas—commercial, intellectual, political, and individual.
"A compelling exposition of how authors, printers, booksellers and readers competed for power over the printed page. . . . The richness of Mr. Johns's book lies in the splendid detail he has collected to describe the world of books in the first two centuries after the printing press arrived in England."—Alberto Manguel, Washington Times
"[A] mammoth and stimulating account of the place of print in the history of knowledge. . . . Johns has written a tremendously learned primer."—D. Graham Burnett, New Republic
"A detailed, engrossing, and genuinely eye-opening account of the formative stages of the print culture. . . . This is scholarship at its best."—Merle Rubin, Christian Science Monitor
"The most lucid and persuasive account of the new kind of knowledge produced by print. . . . A work to rank alongside McLuhan."—John Sutherland, The Independent
"Entertainingly written. . . . The most comprehensive account available . . . well documented and engaging."—Ian Maclean, Times Literary Supplement
In this groundbreaking study, Jacob A. Tropp explores the interconnections between negotiations over the environment and an emerging colonial relationship in a particular South African context—the Transkei—subsequently the largest of the notorious “homelands” under apartheid.
In the late nineteenth century, South Africa’s Cape Colony completed its incorporation of the area beyond the Kei River, known as the Transkei, and began transforming the region into a labor reserve. It simultaneously restructured popular access to local forests, reserving those resources for the benefit of the white settler economy. This placed new constraints on local Africans in accessing resources for agriculture, livestock management, hunting, building materials, fuel, medicine, and ritual practices.
Drawing from a diverse array of oral and written sources, Tropp reveals how bargaining over resources—between and among colonial officials, chiefs and headmen, and local African men and women—was interwoven with major changes in local political authority, gendered economic relations, and cultural practices as well as with intense struggles over the very meaning and scope of colonial rule itself.
Natures of Colonial Change sheds new light on the colonial era in the Transkei by looking at significant yet neglected dimensions of this history: how both “colonizing” and “colonized” groups negotiated environmental access and how such negotiations helped shape the broader making and meaning of life in the new colonial order.
What was life like under the Third Reich? What went on between parents and children? What were the prevailing attitudes about sex, morality, religion? How did workers perceive the effects of the New Order in the workplace? What were the cultural currents—in art, music, science, education, drama, and on the radio?
Professor Mosse’s extensive analysis of Nazi culture—groundbreaking upon its original publication in 1966—is now offered to readers of a new generation. Selections from newspapers, novellas, plays, and diaries as well as the public pronouncements of Nazi leaders, churchmen, and professors describe National Socialism in practice and explore what it meant for the average German.
By recapturing the texture of culture and thought under the Third Reich, Mosse’s work still resonates today—as a document of everyday life in one of history’s darkest eras and as a living memory that reminds us never to forget.
Nazi Film Melodrama
Laura Heins University of Illinois Press, 2013 Library of Congress PN1995.9.N36H45 2013 | Dewey Decimal 791.43028092243
Cultural productions in the Third Reich often served explicit propaganda functions of legitimating racism and glorifying war and militarism. Likewise, the proliferation of domestic and romance films in Nazi Germany also represented an ideological stance. Rather than reinforcing traditional gender role divisions and the status quo of the nuclear family, these films were much more permissive about desire and sexuality than previously assumed. Focusing on German romance films, domestic melodramas, and home front films from 1933 to 1945, Nazi Film Melodrama shows how melodramatic elements in Nazi cinema functioned as part of a project to move affect, body, and desire beyond the confines of bourgeois culture and participate in a curious modernization of sexuality engineered to advance the imperialist goals of the Third Reich.
Offering a comparative analysis of Nazi productions with classical Hollywood films of the same era, Laura Heins argues that German fascist melodramas differed from their American counterparts in their negative views of domesticity and in their use of a more explicit antibourgeois rhetoric. Nazi melodramas, film writing, and popular media appealed to viewers by promoting liberation from conventional sexual morality and familial structures, presenting the Nazi state and the individual as dynamic and revolutionary. Some spectators objected to the eroticization and modernization of the public sphere under Nazism, however, pitting Joseph Goebbels' Ministry of Propaganda against more conservative film audiences in a war over the very status of domesticity and the shape of the family. Drawing on extensive archival research, this perceptive study highlights the seemingly contradictory aspects of gender representation and sexual morality in Nazi-era cinema.
Many images of Nazi propaganda are universally recognizable, and symbolize the ways that the National Socialist party manipulated German citizens. What might an examination of the party’s various uses of sound reveal? In Nazi Soundscapes, Carolyn Birdsall offers an in-depth analysis of the cultural significance of sound and new technologies like radio and loudspeaker systems during the rise of the National Socialist party in the 1920s to the end of World War II. Focusing specifically on the urban soundscape of Düsseldorf, this study examines both the production and reception of sound-based propaganda in the public and private spheres. Birdsall provides a vivid account of sound as a key instrument of social control, exclusion, and violence during Nazi Germany, and she makes a persuasive case for the power of sound within modern urban history.
The Faustian bargain—in which an individual or group collaborates with an evil entity in order to obtain knowledge, power, or material gain—is perhaps best exemplified by the alliance between world-renowned human geneticists and the Nazi state. Under the swastika, German scientists descended into the moral abyss, perpetrating heinous medical crimes at Auschwitz and at euthanasia hospitals. But why did biomedical researchers accept such a bargain?
The Nazi Symbiosis offers a nuanced account of the myriad ways human heredity and Nazi politics reinforced each other before and during the Third Reich. Exploring the ethical and professional consequences for the scientists involved as well as the political ramifications for Nazi racial policies, Sheila Faith Weiss places genetics and eugenics in their larger international context. In questioning whether the motives that propelled German geneticists were different from the compromises that researchers from other countries and eras face, Weiss extends her argument into our modern moment, as we confront the promises and perils of genomic medicine today.
In 2006 a long-forgotten canister of film was discovered in a church in Devon, a county located in the southwestern corner of the United Kingdom. No one knew how it had gotten there, but its contents were tantalizing—the grainy black and white footage showed members of the German SS and police building a road in Ukraine and Crimea in 1943. The BBC caused a sensation when it aired the footage, but the film gave few clues to the protagonists or their task.
World War II historian G. H. Bennett pieces together the story of the film and its principal characters in The Nazi, the Painter and the Forgotten Story of the SS Road. In his search for answers, Bennett unearthed an overlooked chapter of the Holocaust: a wartime German road-building project led by Walter Gieseke, the Nazi policeman who ended up running the SS task force, that served the dual purpose of exterminating Jewish and other lives while laying the infrastructure for a utopian Nazi haven in the Ukraine. Bennett tells the story of the road and its builders through the experiences of Arnold Daghani, a Romanian artist who was one of the few Jewish laborers to survive the project. Daghani describes the brutal treatment he endured, as well as the beating, torture, and murder of his fellow laborers by the Nazis, and his postwar efforts to bring the perpetrators to justice.
Recovering an important but lost episode in the history of World War II and the Holocaust, The Nazi, the Painter and the Forgotten Story of the SS Road is a moving and at times horrifying chronicle of suffering, deprivation, and survival.
Following France’s defeat, the Nazis moved forward with plans to reorganize a European continent now largely under Hitler’s heel. Some Nazi elites argued for a pan-European cultural empire to crown Hitler’s conquests. Benjamin Martin charts the rise and fall of Nazi-fascist soft power and brings into focus a neglected aspect of Axis geopolitics.
The Südosteuropa-Gesellschaft (Southeast Europe Society or SOEG) was founded in 1940 to formulate wartime policy in Southeast Europe; its organizational life began and ended with the Third Reich.
In his analysis of the creation, growth, and death of the SOEG, Dietrich Orlow focuses on the institutional behavior and power struggles of this microcosm of the Nazi system. Its story is illustrative of the nature of politics in all totalitarian societies and reveals the aims and the failure of Germany's wartime exploitation of the Balkan resources and the long-term economic designs for the Balkans after the Third Reich's expected victory.
This timely book takes an original transnational approach to the theme of Nazism and neo-Nazism in film, media, and popular culture, with examples drawn from mainland Europe, the UK, North and Latin America, Asia, and beyond. This approach fits with the established dominance of global multimedia formats, and will be useful for students, scholars, and researchers in all forms of film and media. Along with the essential need to examine current trends in Nazism and neo-Nazism in contemporary media globally, what makesthis book even more necessary is that it engages with debates that go to the very heart of our understanding of knowledge: history, memory, meaning, and truth.
The fields of cookery and medieval food continue to draw the attention of those interested in a panoramic picture of aristocratic and bourgeois social life in the late Middle Ages. In the fifteenth century, wealthy courts in the Italian peninsula led all of Europe in gastronomical achievement. The professional cooks in the service of the Este, Medici, and Borgia families were the most advanced masters of their craft, and some of them bequeathed a record of their practice in manuscript collections of recipes.
Outstanding among these early cookbooks is the one written by an anonymous master cook in Naples toward the end of the century. In its 220 recipes, one can trace not only the Italian culinary practice of the day but also the very refined taste brought by the Catalan royal family when they ruled Naples. This edition—with Terence Scully’s introduction touching on the nature of cookery in the Neapolitano Collection, and English translation of and commentary on the recipes—will give the reader a glimpse into the rich fare available to occupants and guests of one of the greatest houses of late medieval Italy.
The Neapolitan Recipe Collection offers a particularly delicious slice of the primary documentation necessary for understanding the nature of medieval society and one of its most important aspects.
Tea drinking in Victorian England was a pervasive activity that, when seen through the lens of a century’s perspective, presents a unique overview of Victorian culture. Tea was a necessity and a luxury; it was seen as masculine as well as feminine; it symbolized the exotic and the domestic; and it represented both moderation and excess. Tea was flexible enough to accommodate and to mark subtle differences in social status, to mediate these differences between individuals, and to serve as a shared cultural symbol within England.
In A Necessary Luxury: Tea in Victorian England, Julie E. Fromer analyzes tea histories, advertisements, and nine Victorian novels, including Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Wuthering Heights, and Portrait of a Lady. Fromer demonstrates how tea functions within the literature as an arbiter of taste and middle-class respectability, aiding in the determination of class status and moral position. She reveals the way in which social identity and character are inextricably connected in Victorian ideology as seen through the ritual of tea.
Drawing from the fields of literary studies, cultural studies, history, and anthropology, A Necessary Luxury offers in-depth analysis of both visual and textual representations of the commodity and the ritual that was tea in nineteenth-century England.
Christianity, Judaism, and Islam are usually treated as autonomous religions, but in fact across the long course of their histories the three religions have developed in interaction with one another. In Neighboring Faiths, David Nirenberg examines how Muslims, Christians, and Jews lived with and thought about each other during the Middle Ages and what the medieval past can tell us about how they do so today.
There have been countless scripture-based studies of the three “religions of the book,” but Nirenberg goes beyond those to pay close attention to how the three religious neighbors loved, tolerated, massacred, and expelled each other—all in the name of God—in periods and places both long ago and far away. Nirenberg argues that the three religions need to be studied in terms of how each affected the development of the others over time, their proximity of religious and philosophical thought as well as their overlapping geographies, and how the three “neighbors” define—and continue to define—themselves and their place in terms of one another. From dangerous attractions leading to interfaith marriage; to interreligious conflicts leading to segregation, violence, and sometimes extermination; to strategies for bridging the interfaith gap through language, vocabulary, and poetry, Nirenberg aims to understand the intertwined past of the three faiths as a way for their heirs to produce the future—together.
"This is a fascinating local story with major implications for studies of nationalism and regional identities throughout Europe more generally."
---Dennis Sweeney, University of Alberta
"James Bjork has produced a finely crafted, insightful, indeed, pathbreaking study of the interplay between religious and national identity in late nineteenth-century Central Europe."
---Anthony Steinhoff, University of Tennessee at Chattanooga
Neither German nor Pole examines how the inhabitants of one of Europe's most densely populated industrial districts managed to defy clear-cut national categorization, even in the heyday of nationalizing pressures at the turn of the twentieth century. As James E. Bjork argues, the "civic national" project of turning inhabitants of Upper Silesia into Germans and the "ethnic national" project of awakening them as Poles both enjoyed successes, but these often canceled one another out, exacerbating rather than eliminating doubts about people's national allegiances. In this deadlock, it was a different kind of identification---religion---that provided both the ideological framework and the social space for Upper Silesia to navigate between German and Polish orientations. A fine-grained, microhistorical study of how confessional politics and the daily rhythms of bilingual Roman Catholic religious practice subverted national identification, Neither German nor Pole moves beyond local history to address broad questions about the relationship between nationalism, religion, and modernity.
This incisive study examines the role of the Netherlands in the October War and the oil crisis of 1973. The authors contend that the actions of the Dutch government were hypocritical: the Dutch government faced a domestic crisis when an oil embargo was levied against them by Arab countries for selling arms to Israel; yet after oil began arriving again two months later, the Dutch rejected a proposal for a stricter interventionist energy policy within the European Union. A probing and thought-provoking study, The Netherlands and the Oil Crisis draws on previously unavailable archival sources to shed new light on a pivotal moment in contemporary Dutch history.
This book presents a global overview of the key events and themes in Dutch history and culture: a choice of fifty key topics, or ‘windows’ into the country. Fifty important people, inventions and events which together show how the Netherlands has developed into the country that it is now. Each topic includes a list of places to visit and websites. At the back of the book, there is an overview of the fifty ‘windows’, grouped in fourteen themes. This is an excellent introduction for anyone who would like to make an acquaintance with this low country by the sea.
This book explores the co-development of political, social, economic, and artistic networks of Florentines in the Kingdom of Hungary during the reign of Sigismund of Luxembourg. Analyzing the social network of these politicians, merchants, artisans, royal officers, dignitaries of the Church, and noblemen is the primary objective of this book. The study addresses both descriptively the patterns of connectivity and causally the impacts of this complex network on cultural exchanges of various types, among these migration, commerce, diplomacy, and artistic exchange. In the setting of a case study, this monograph should best be thought of as an attempt to cross the boundaries that divide political, economic, social, and art history so that they simultaneously figure into a single integrated story of Florentine history and development.
A Network of Converso Families in Early Modern Toledo addresses the fortunes of Jewish families who converted to Catholicism in fifteenth-century Spain. From the fifteenth through the seventeenth century, their careers, successes, and misfortunes are traced as they confront institutional and societal prejudices in the form of the Spanish Inquisition and pure blood statutes.
Linda M. Martz focuses on families that were immersed in the worlds of business and finance. They formed the backbone of the trade industry and, during the economic expansion of the sixteenth century, enjoyed a high degree of affluence. The seventeenth century, however, brought harder times. How these families rose to positions of commercial eminence and then adapted to this economic downturn is one of the questions addressed in this insightful book.
A Network of Converso Families in Early Modern Toledo relies heavily on archival evidence--notarial, parish, and city records--that offers new insights into the families' histories. Business endeavors, marriage alliances, involvement in local politics, and the pursuit of improved social status are all subjected to Martz's keen analysis.
These families appear to have been well integrated into their contemporary society; aside from their business and financial activities, many were members of the city's governing council. But how well did they integrate with the lower classes? Assimilating minorities in the majority culture is a task that confronts most modern societies, so the experience of Spain and this particular minority may serve as an example of how earlier societies viewed and confronted this challenge.
This book will appeal to historians of medieval and Renaissance Spain and those interested in the Inquisition's effect on Renaissance Spain. It will also prove to be indispensable for those interested in the history of the Jewish race, as well as for those pursuing the question of marginalization.
Linda M. Martz is an independent historian as well as a freelance editor and writer.
“The New Berlin is a notable contribution to human geography and to the interdisciplinary literature on social memory and place making. Till’s methods and scholarship have provided the conceptual groundwork for the exploration and development of place making, social memory, and spatial haunting through the particular practices and politics of the new Berlin. Her readable style is marked by a narrative economy in which every word and sentence serves the larger purposes of the book. I recommend this book to anyone—student, scholar, or practitioner—who is interested in the social dynamics of memory formation and place making.” —The Professional Geographer
“This book is a well-written ‘first-hand’ account, though it also thoroughly covers academic literature, contemporary news accounts, and archival records.” —German Studies Review
“Karen E. Till's The New Berlin describes the modern metropolis and the ghosts of the past that it has to deal with.” —German World
“Well illustrated and copiously footnoted, this is a cutting-edge study of the power of identity-construction/analysis. Highly recommended.” —CHOICE
After the collapse of communism in the Soviet Union and eastern Europe, more than a dozen countries undertook aggressive privatization programs. Proponents of economic reform championed such large-scale efforts as the fastest, most reliable way to make the transition from a state-run to a capitalist economy.
The idea was widely embraced, and in the span of a few years, policymakers across the region repeatedly chose an approach that distributed vast amounts of state property to the private sector essentially for free-despite the absence of any historical precedent for such a radical concept. But privatization was not a panacea. It has, instead, become increasingly synonymous with collusion, corruption, and material deprivation.
Why was privatization so popular in the first place, and what went wrong? In answering this question, Hillary Appel breaks with mainstream empirical studies of postcommunist privatization.
By analyzing the design and development of programs in Russia, the Czech Republic, and across eastern Europe, Appel demonstrates how the transformation of property rights in these countries was first and foremost an ideologically driven process. Looking beyond simple economic calculations or pressure from the international community, she argues that privatization was part and parcel of the foundation of the postcommunist state.
A New Capitalist Order reveals that privatization was designed and implemented by pro-market reformers not only to distribute gains and losses to powerful supporters, but also to advance a decidedly Western, liberal vision of the new postcommunist state. Moreover, specific ideologies-such as anticommunism, liberalism, or nationalism, to name but a few-profoundly influenced the legitimacy, the power, and even the material preferences of key economic actors and groups within the privatization process.
After 1750 the Americas lived political and popular revolutions, the fall of European empires, and the rise of nations as the world faced a new industrial capitalism. Political revolution made the United States the first new nation; revolutionary slaves made Haiti the second, freeing themselves and destroying the leading Atlantic export economy. A decade later, Bajío insurgents took down the silver economy that fueled global trade and sustained Spain’s empire while Britain triumphed at war and pioneered industrial ways that led the U.S. South, still-Spanish Cuba, and a Brazilian empire to expand slavery to supply rising industrial centers. Meanwhile, the fall of silver left people from Mexico through the Andes searching for new states and economies. After 1870 the United States became an agro-industrial hegemon, and most American nations turned to commodity exports, while Haitians and diverse indigenous peoples struggled to retain independent ways.
Contributors. Alfredo Ávila, Roberto Breña, Sarah C. Chambers, Jordana Dym, Carolyn Fick, Erick Langer, Adam Rothman, David Sartorius, Kirsten Schultz, John Tutino
New German Dance Studies
Edited by Susan Manning and Lucia Ruprecht University of Illinois Press, 2012 Library of Congress GV1651.N48 2012 | Dewey Decimal 793.31943
New German Dance Studies offers fresh histories and theoretical inquiries that resonate across fields of the humanities. Sixteen essays range from eighteenth-century theater dance to popular contemporary dances in global circulation. In an exquisite trans-Atlantic dialogue that demonstrates the complexity and multilayered history of German dance, American and European scholars and artists elaborate on definitive performers and choreography, focusing on three major thematic areas: Weimar culture and its afterlife, the German Democratic Republic, and recent conceptual trends in theater dance.
Contributors are Maaike Bleeker, Franz Anton Cramer, Kate Elswit, Susanne Franco, Susan Funkenstein, Jens Richard Giersdorf, Yvonne Hardt, Sabine Huschka, Claudia Jeschke, Marion Kant, Gabriele Klein, Karen Mozingo, Tresa Randall, Gerald Siegmund, and Christina Thurner.
In 1763 British America stretched from Hudson Bay to the Keys, from the Atlantic to the Mississippi. Using maps that Britain created to control its new lands, Max Edelson pictures the contested geography of the British Atlantic world and offers new explanations of the causes and consequences of Britain’s imperial ambitions before the Revolution.
The Society for Psychical Research was established in 1882 to further the scientific study of consciousness, but it arose in the surf of a larger cultural need. Victorians were on the hunt for self-understanding. Mesmerists, spiritualists, and other romantic seekers roamed sunken landscapes of entrancement, and when psychology was finally ready to confront these altered states, psychical research was adopted as an experimental vanguard. Far from a rejected science, it was a necessary heterodoxy, probing mysteries as diverse as telepathy, hypnosis, and even séance phenomena. Its investigators sought facts far afield of physical laws: evidence of a transcendent, irreducible mind.
The New Prometheans traces the evolution of psychical research through the intertwining biographies of four men: chemist Sir William Crookes, depth psychologist Frederic Myers, ether physicist Sir Oliver Lodge, and anthropologist Andrew Lang. All past presidents of the society, these men brought psychical research beyond academic circles and into the public square, making it part of a shared, far-reaching examination of science and society. By layering their papers, textbooks, and lectures with more intimate texts like diaries, letters, and literary compositions, Courtenay Raia returns us to a critical juncture in the history of secularization, the last great gesture of reconciliation between science and sacred truths.
<I>New Readings on Women and Early Medieval English Literature and Culture</I> showcases current and original scholarship relating to women in Early Medieval English culture and in Early Medieval English studies and promises to stimulate new work in those areas. Recognizing the plasticity of gender structures, roles, and relations in Early Medieval English literature and culture as well as within the modern discipline of Early Medieval English Studies, the essays reveal pluralities of gender bequeathed to us and encourage us to rethink power/gender dynamics in our present moment.
Using data from the Integration of the Second Generation in Europe survey, this timely study focuses on the Turkish and former Yugoslav second generation of immigrants in Switzerland. A common thread running through the various chapters is a comparison with previous research on Switzerland concerning the second generation of Italian and Spanish origin. The authors provide valuable insights into the current situation of the children of Turkish and Yugoslav immigrants while underlining the historical similarities and differences of their respective incorporation processes.
The discovery of the New World was initially a cause for celebration. But the vast amounts of gold that Columbus and other explorers claimed from these lands altered Spanish society. The influx of such wealth contributed to the expansion of the Spanish empire, but also it raised doubts and insecurities about the meaning and function of money, the ideals of court and civility, and the structure of commerce and credit. New World Gold shows that, far from being a stabilizing force, the flow of gold from the Americas created anxieties among Spaniards and shaped a host of distinct behaviors, cultural practices, and intellectual pursuits on both sides of the Atlantic.
Elvira Vilches examines economic treatises, stories of travel and conquest, moralist writings, fiction, poetry, and drama to reveal that New World gold ultimately became a problematic source of power that destabilized Spain’s sense of trust, truth, and worth. These cultural anxieties, she argues, rendered the discovery of gold paradoxically disastrous for Spanish society. Combining economic thought, social history, and literary theory in trans-Atlantic contexts, New World Gold unveils the dark side of Spain’s Golden Age.
Heidi Tworek’s innovative history reveals how, across two devastating wars, Germany attempted to build a powerful communication empire—and how the Nazis manipulated the news to rise to dominance in Europe and further their global agenda. When the news became a form of international power, it changed the course of history.
Nothing is considered more natural than the connection between Isaac Newton’s science and the modernity that came into being during the eighteenth-century Enlightenment. Terms like “Newtonianism” are routinely taken as synonyms for “Enlightenment” and “modern” thought, yet the particular conjunction of these terms has a history full of accidents and contingencies. Modern physics, for example, was not the determined result of the rational unfolding of Newton’s scientific work in the eighteenth century, nor was the Enlightenment the natural and inevitable consequence of Newton’s eighteenth-century reception. Each of these outcomes, in fact, was a contingent event produced by the particular historical developments of the early eighteenth century.
A comprehensive study of public culture, The Newton Wars and the Beginning of the French Enlightenment digsbelow the surface of the commonplace narratives that link Newton with Enlightenment thought to examine the actual historical changes that brought them together in eighteenth-century time and space. Drawing on the full range of early modern scientific sources, from studied scientific treatises and academic papers to book reviews, commentaries, and private correspondence, J. B. Shank challenges the widely accepted claim that Isaac Newton’s solitary genius is the reason for his iconic status as the father of modern physics and the philosophemovement.
In the spring of 1945 the Allies arrested the physicists they believed had worked on the German nuclear programme. Interned in an English country house owned by MI6, their conversations were secretly recorded. Operation Epsilon sought to determine how close Nazi Germany had come to building an atomic bomb. It was in this quiet setting – Farm Hall, near Cambridge – that the interned physicists first heard of the attack on Hiroshima. Aside from changing the course of history, that night was also one of great shock and personal defeat for the physicists – they were under the assumption that they alone had discovered nuclear fission. This is the story of Nazi Germany’s hunt for a nuclear bomb. It is a tale of the genius and guilt of lauded, respected scientists.
A celebrated figure in myth, song, and story, the nightingale has captivated the imagination for millennia, its complex song evoking a prism of human emotions,—from melancholy to joy, from the fear of death to the immortality of art.
But have you ever listened closely to a nightingale’s song? It’s a strange and unsettling sort of composition—an eclectic assortment of chirps, whirs, trills, clicks, whistles, twitters, and gurgles. At times it is mellifluous, at others downright guttural. It is a rhythmic assault, always eluding capture. What happens if you decide to join in?
As philosopher and musician David Rothenberg shows in this searching and personal new book, the nightingale’s song is so peculiar in part because it reflects our own cacophony back at us. As vocal learners, nightingales acquire their music through the world around them, singing amidst the sounds of humanity in all its contradictions of noise and beauty, hard machinery and soft melody. Rather than try to capture a sound not made for us to understand, Rothenberg seeks these musical creatures out, clarinet in tow, and makes a new sound with them. He takes us to the urban landscape of Berlin—longtime home to nightingale colonies where the birds sing ever louder in order to be heard—and invites us to listen in on their remarkable collaboration as birds and instruments riff off of each other’s sounds. Through dialogue, travel records, sonograms, tours of Berlin’s city parks, and musings on the place animal music occupies in our collective imagination, Rothenberg takes us on a quest for a new sonic alchemy, a music impossible for any one species to make alone. In the tradition of The Hidden Life of Trees and The Invention of Nature, Rothenberg has written a provocative and accessible book to attune us ever closer to the natural environment around us.
This elegantly written book describes the changes in the perception and experience of the night in three great European cities: Paris, Berlin and London. The lighting up of the European city by gas and electricity in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries brought about a new relationship with the night, in respect of both work and pleasure. Nights in the Big City explores this new awareness of the city in all its ramifications.
Joachim Schlör has spent his days sifting through countless police and church archives, and first-hand accounts, and his nights exploring the highways and byways of these three great capitals. Illustrated with haunting and evocative photographs by, among others, Brandt and Kertész, and filled with contemporary literary references, Nights in the Big City has already been acclaimed in the German press as a milestone in the cultural history of the city.
"[Schlör] is erudite, and his literary style is alluring."—Architect's Journal
Nihil Obstat—Latin for "nothing stands in the way"—examines the interplay between religion and politics in East-Central Europe and Russia. While focusing on the postcommunist, late twentieth century, Sabrina P. Ramet discusses developments as far back as the eleventh century to explain the patterns that have developed over time and to show how they still affect contemporary interecclesiastical relations as well as those among Church, state, and society. Based on interview research in Germany, Austria, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia, Serbia, and Macedonia, and on materials published in German, Italian, Serbo-Croatian, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Russian, and English, Ramet paints a clear picture of the political and religious fragility of former communist states, which are experiencing some aspects of freedom and choice for the first time. With its comprehensive discussion of the largest religious institutions in the area, especially the Catholic and Orthodox Churches, and its extensive survey of nontraditional religious associations that have become active in the region since 1989, this study makes a distinct contribution to growing discussions about the rise of fundamentalism and the inner dilemmas of modernity. With its depth of information and thoughtful exploration of cultural traditions, Nihil Obstat uniquely presents the ramifications and complexities of European religion in a postcommunist world.
No End in Sight offers a critical analysis of Polish cinema and literature during the transformative late Socialist period of the 1970s and 1980s. Anna Krakus details how conceptions of time, permanence, and endings shaped major Polish artistic works. She further demonstrates how film and literature played a major role in shaping political consciousness during this highly-charged era. Despite being controlled by an authoritarian state and the doctrine of socialism, artists were able to portray the unsettled nature of the political and psychological climate of the period, and an undetermined future.
In analyzing films by Andrzej Wajda, Krzysztof Kieslowsi, Krzysztof Zanussi, Wojciech Has, and Tadeusz Konwicki alongside Konwicki’s literary production, Anna Krakus identifies their shared penchant to defer or completely eschew narrative closure, whether in plot, theme, or style. Krakus calls this artistic tendency "aesthetic unfinalizability." As she reveals, aesthetic unfinalizability was far more than an occasional artistic preference or a passing trend; it was a radical counterpolitical act. The obsession with historical teleology saturated Polish public life during socialism to such a degree that instances of nonclosure or ambivalent endings emerged as polemical responses to official ideology.
A gifted poet, a women's rights activist, and an expert on moral and natural philosophy, Lucrezia Marinella (1571-1653) was known throughout Italy as the leading female intellectual of her age. Born into a family of Venetian physicians, she was encouraged to study, and, fortunately, she did not share the fate of many of her female contemporaries, who were forced to join convents or were pressured to marry early. Marinella enjoyed a long literary career, writing mainly religious, epic, and pastoral poetry, and biographies of famous women in both verse and prose.
Marinella's masterpiece, The Nobility and Excellence of Women, and the Defects and Vices of Men was first published in 1600, composed at a furious pace in answer to Giusepe Passi's diatribe about women's alleged defects. This polemic displays Marinella's vast knowledge of the Italian poetic tradition and demonstrates her ability to argue against authors of the misogynist tradition from Boccaccio to Torquato Tasso. Trying to effect real social change, Marinella argued that morally, intellectually, and in many other ways, women are superior to men.
This book presents a reconstruction of the socio-economic, ethnic, cultural, and political history of the Carpathian-Danubian area in the eighth and ninth centuries at a period when nomadic peoples from the east including the Bulgars, Avars, and Khazars migrated here. The work is based on a comprehensive analysis of narrative and archaeological sources including sites, artefacts, and goods in the basin bordered by the Tisza river in the west, the Danube in the south, and the Dniestr river in the east, covering swathes of modern-day Romania, Moldova, Ukraine, Serbia, and Hungary.
The political structures of the Scandinavian nations have long stood as models for government and public policy. This comprehensive study examines how that “Nordic model” of government developed, as well as its far-reaching influence.
Respected Scandinavian historian Mary Hilson surveys the political bureaucracies of the five Nordic countries—Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden—and traces their historical influences and the ways they have changed, individually and as a group, over time. The book investigates issues such as economic development, foreign policy, politics, government, and the welfare state, and it also explores prevailing cultural perceptions of Scandinavia in the twentieth century. Hilson then turns to the future of the Nordic region as a unified whole within Europe as well as in the world, and considers the re-emergence of the Baltic Sea as a pivotal region on the global stage.
The Nordic Model offers an incisive assessment of Scandinavia yesterday and today, making this an essential text for students and scholars of political science, European history, and Scandinavian studies.
Normality: A Critical Genealogy
Peter Cryle and Elizabeth Stephens University of Chicago Press, 2017 Library of Congress B105.N65C79 2017 | Dewey Decimal 302.1
The concept of normal is so familiar that it can be hard to imagine contemporary life without it. Yet the term entered everyday speech only in the mid-twentieth century. Before that, it was solely a scientific term used primarily in medicine to refer to a general state of health and the orderly function of organs. But beginning in the middle of the twentieth century, normal broke out of scientific usage, becoming less precise and coming to mean a balanced condition to be maintained and an ideal to be achieved.
In Normality, Peter Cryle and Elizabeth Stephens offer an intellectual and cultural history of what it means to be normal. They explore the history of how communities settle on any one definition of the norm, along the way analyzing a fascinating series of case studies in fields as remote as anatomy, statistics, criminal anthropology, sociology, and eugenics. Cryle and Stephens argue that since the idea of normality is so central to contemporary disability, gender, race, and sexuality studies, scholars in these fields must first have a better understanding of the context for normality. This pioneering book moves beyond binaries to explore for the first time what it does—and doesn’t—mean to be normal.
Northern Arcadia is a comparative study of the accounts of foreign visitors to the Nordic lands during the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.
Before the late eighteenth century, few foreigners ventured as far as Scandinavia. The region seemed a cold hyperborean wilderness and a voyage there a daring adventure. From the mid-1760s on, however, foreigners arrived in the Nordic lands in increasing numbers, leaving numerous accounts that became increasingly popular, satisfying a growing curiosity about regions beyond the traditional grand tour.
The pre-Romantic mood of the period—with its predilection for untamed nature and for peoples uncorrupted by overrefined civilization—further stimulated fascination with the North. European titerati discovered the Nordic sagas, finding them exhilarating, passionate, imaginative, and original. The French Revolution and the ensuing European wars effectively closed off much of the Continent to foreign travel, turning attention to the still neutral northern kingdoms.
Travel literature about Scandinavia thus illuminates the shift in the European intellectual climate from the enlightened rationalism and utilitarianism of the earlier travelers in this period to the pre-Romantic sensibility of those who followed them. In a Europe torn by war and revolution, sensitive souls could find their new Arcadia in the North—at least until the Scandinavian kingdoms themselves became engulfed by the Napoleonic wars after 1805.
The first scholar to examine as a whole the travel literature dealing with Denmark, Schleswig-Holstein, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Iceland, and the Færø Islands, H. Arnold Barton discusses accounts left by both the celebrated and the obscure. Well-known travelers include Vittorio Alfieri, Francisco de Miranda, Mary Wollstonecraft, Thomas Malthus, and Aaron Burr. Literary travelers of the day included Nathanael Wraxall, William Coxe, Charles Gottlob Küttner, Edward Daniel Clarke, and John Carr.
Northern Arcadia brings out contrasts: among the various Nordic lands and regions; among the reactions of travelers of differing nationality; between the earlier as opposed to the later travelers of the time; between native Scandinavian and foreign perceptions of the North; between conditions in Scandinavia and those in other parts of the Western world; between then and now. It incorporates continuity and change, reality and mentality.
Not One Man Not One Penny
Gary P. Steenson University of Pittsburgh Press, 1981 Library of Congress HX273.S786 | Dewey Decimal 324.24307209
The German social democratic movement was the first mass, working-class party in world history, and a prototype for one of the major features of twentieth-century politics. Gary P. Steenson presents an introduction to the origins and development of German social democracy up to the First World War, by drawing upon protocols of the German Social Democratic Party, the party press, correspondence of leading figures, and scholarly research. Steenson also offers biographical sketches of prominent party officials, and translations of party programs and bylaws in the appendix.
Magnus Hirschfeld’s Institute for Sexual Science was founded in Berlin in 1919 as a place of research, political advocacy, counseling, and public education. Inspired by the world’s first gay rights organizations, it was closely allied with other groups fighting for sexual reform and women’s rights, and was destroyed in 1933 as the first target of the Nazi book burnings. Not Straight from Germany examines the legacy of that history, combining essays and a lavish array of visual materials. Scholarly essays investigate the ways in which sex became public in early 20th-century Germany, contributing to a growing awareness of Hirschfeld’s influence on histories of sexuality while also widening the perspective beyond the lens of identity politics.
Two visual sourcebooks and catalog essays on an exhibition of contemporary artists’ responses to the Hirschfeld historical materials interrogate the modes of visual representation that Hirschfeld employed by re-imagining the public visibility of his institute from a contemporary perspective. The archival material includes stunning, never-before-published images from Hirschfeld’s institute that challenge many received ideas, while the scholarly and art catalog essays explore collaboration and dialogue as methods of research and activism that resonate beyond the academy to pressing issues of public concern.
Opera often seems to arouse either irrational enthusiasm or visceral dislike. Such madness, as Goethe wrote, is indispensable in all theater, and yet in practice, sentiment and passion must be balanced by sense and reason. Exploring this tension between madness and reason, Not without Madness presents new analytical approaches to thinking about eighteenth- and nineteenth-century opera through the lenses of its historical and cultural contexts.
In these twelve essays, Fabrizio Della Seta explores the concept of opera as a dramatic event and an essential moment in the history of theater. Examining the meaning of opera and the devices that produce and transmit this meaning, he looks at the complex verbal, musical, and scenic mechanisms in parts of La sonnambula, Ernani, Aida, Le nozze di Figaro, Macbeth, and Il trovatore. He argues that approaches to the study of opera must address performance, interpretation, composition, reception, and cultural ramifications. Purely musical analysis does not make sense unless we take into account music’s dramatic function. Containing many essays available for the first time in English, Not without Madness bridges recent divisions in opera studies and will attract musicologists, musicians, and opera lovers alike.
In Notebooks, English Virtuosi, and Early Modern Science, Richard Yeo interprets a relatively unexplored set of primary archival sources: the notes and notebooks of some of the leading figures of the Scientific Revolution. Notebooks were important to several key members of the Royal Society of London, including Robert Boyle, John Evelyn, Robert Hooke, John Locke, and others, who drew on Renaissance humanist techniques of excerpting from texts to build storehouses of proverbs, maxims, quotations, and other material in personal notebooks, or commonplace books. Yeo shows that these men appreciated the value of their own notes both as powerful tools for personal recollection, and, following Francis Bacon, as a system of precise record keeping from which they could retrieve large quantities of detailed information for collaboration.
The virtuosi of the seventeenth century were also able to reach beyond Bacon and the humanists, drawing inspiration from the ancient Hippocratic medical tradition and its emphasis on the gradual accumulation of information over time. By reflecting on the interaction of memory, notebooks, and other records, Yeo argues, the English virtuosi shaped an ethos of long-term empirical scientific inquiry.
Charlotte Salomon's (1917-43) fantastical autobiography, Life? or Theater?, consists of 769 sequenced gouache paintings, through which the artist imagined the circumstances of the eight suicides in her family, all but one of them women. But Salomon's focus on suicide was not merely a familial idiosyncrasy. Nothing Happenedargues that the social history of early-twentieth-century Germany has elided an important cultural and social phenomenon by not including the story of German Jewish women and suicide. This absence in social history mirrors an even larger gap in the intellectual history of deeply gendered suicide studies that have reproduced the notion of women's suicide as a rarity in history. Nothing Happenedis a historiographic intervention that operates in conversation and in tension with contemporary theory about trauma and the reconstruction of emotion in history.
Quack, conjurer, sex fiend, murderer—Simon Forman has been called all these things, and worse, ever since he was implicated (two years after his death) in the Overbury poisoning scandal that rocked the court of King James. But as Barbara Traister shows in this fascinating book, Forman's own unpublished manuscripts—considered here in their entirety for the first time—paint a quite different picture of the works and days of this notorious astrological physician of London.
Although he received no formal medical education, Forman built a thriving practice. His success rankled the College of Physicians of London, who hounded Forman with fines and jail terms for nearly two decades. In addition to detailing case histories of his medical practice—the first such records known from London—as well as his run-ins with the College, Forman's manuscripts cover a wide variety of other matters, from astrology and alchemy to gardening and the theater. His autobiographical writings are among the earliest English examples of their genre and display an abiding passion for reworking his personal history in the best possible light, even though they show little evidence that Forman ever intended to publish them.
Fantastic as many of Forman's manuscripts are, it is their more mundane aspects that make them such a priceless record of what daily life was like for ordinary inhabitants of Shakespeare's London. Forman's descriptions of the stench of a privy, the paralyzed limbs of a child, a lost bitch dog with a velvet collar all offer tantalizing glimpses of a world that seems at once very far away and intimately familiar. Anyone who wants to reclaim that world will enjoy this book.
In this series of interrelated essays, treating Ovil, Virgil, St. Augustine, Henrich von Morungen, Chretien de Troyes, Dante, Langland, and Chaucer, the author explores the ways in which medieval authors and their Roman predecessors used the image of the mirror both as instrument and metaphor. The essays individually provide fresh insights into the texts and issues discussed and, taken together, provide new perspectives on medieval culture and the ways it anticipated problems that plague our own.
Now through a Glass Darkly brings both traditional medievalist and postmodernist approaches to bear in its attempt to understand both the powers and the limits of verbal art. Nolan explores the ways medieval writers and their Roman predecessors used formal and thematic mirrors to examine the implications of alterity in the face of similarity, arguing that these preoccupations were as central to the medieval sensibility as they are to our own. Now through a Glass Darkly frames several of the key issues in the current debate over the continued viability (or not) of the inherited canon of Western culture, such as the question whether there is any meaning at all to be rescued from such notions as “coherence” or “tradition” in Western literature.
Now through a Glass Darkly will appeal to the educated generalist interested in the relationships between literature and its surrounding intellectual and cultural contexts as well as to those more specifically interested in medieval poetry and poetics. For medievalists and those who work at the intersection of critical theory and medieval literature, Now through a Glass Darkly will be of critical importance.
In 1949 construction of the planned town of Nowa Huta began on the outskirts of Kraków, Poland. Its centerpiece, the Lenin Steelworks, promised a secure future for workers and their families. By the 1980s, however, the rise of the Solidarity movement and the ensuing shock therapy program of the early 1990s rapidly transitioned the country from socialism to a market-based economy, and Nowa Huta fell on hard times.
Kinga Pozniak shows how the remarkable political, economic, and social upheavals since the end of the Second World War have profoundly shaped the historical memory of these events in the minds of the people who lived through them. Through extensive interviews, she finds three distinct, generationally based framings of the past. Those who built the town recall the might of local industry and plentiful jobs. The following generation experienced the uprisings of the 1980s and remembers the repression and dysfunction of the socialist system and their resistance to it. Today’s generation has no direct experience with either socialism or Solidarity, yet as residents of Nowa Huta they suffer the stigma of lower-class stereotyping and marginalization from other Poles.
Pozniak examines the factors that lead to the rewriting of history and the formation of memory, and the use of history to sustain current political and economic agendas. She finds that despite attempts to create a single, hegemonic vision of the past and a path for the future, these discourses are always contested—a dynamic that, for the residents of Nowa Huta, allows them to adapt as their personal experience tells them.
Witchcraft. Arson. Going AWOL. Some nuns in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Italy strayed far from the paradigms of monastic life. Cloistered in convents, subjected to stifling hierarchy, repressed, and occasionally persecuted by their male superiors, these women circumvented authority in sometimes extraordinary ways. But tales of their transgressions have long been buried in the Vatican Secret Archive. That is, until now.
In Nuns Behaving Badly, Craig A. Monson resurrects forgotten tales and restores to life the long-silent voices of these cloistered heroines. Here we meet nuns who dared speak out about physical assault and sexual impropriety (some real, some imagined). Others were only guilty of misjudgment or defacing valuable artwork that offended their sensibilities. But what unites the women and their stories is the challenges they faced: these were women trying to find their way within the Catholicism of their day and through the strict limits it imposed on them. Monson introduces us to women who were occasionally desperate to flee cloistered life, as when an entire community conspired to torch their convent and be set free. But more often, he shows us nuns just trying to live their lives. When they were crossed—by powerful priests who claimed to know what was best for them—bad behavior could escalate from mere troublemaking to open confrontation.
In resurrecting these long-forgotten tales and trials, Monson also draws attention to the predicament of modern religious women, whose “misbehavior”—seeking ordination as priests or refusing to give up their endowments to pay for priestly wrongdoing in their own archdioceses—continues even today. The nuns of early modern Italy, Monson shows, set the standard for religious transgression in their own age—and beyond.