The Ashgate Research Companion to Popular Culture in Early Modern England is a comprehensive, interdisciplinary examination of current research on popular culture in the early modern era. For the first time a detailed yet wide-ranging consideration of the breadth and scope of early modern popular culture in England is collected in one volume, highlighting the interplay of 'low' and 'high' modes of cultural production (while also questioning the validity of such terminology). The authors examine how popular culture impacted upon people's everyday lives during the period, helping to define how individuals and groups experienced the world. Issues as disparate as popular reading cultures, games, food and drink, time, textiles, religious belief and superstition, and the function of festivals and rituals are discussed. This research companion will be an essential resource for scholars and students of early modern history and culture.
Understanding Early Modern Primary Sources is an introduction to the rich treasury of source material available to students of early modern history. During this period, political development, economic and social change, rising literacy levels, and the success of the printing press, ensured that the State, the Church and the people generated texts and objects on an unprecedented scale. This book introduces students to the sources that survived to become indispensable primary material studied by historians. After a wide-ranging introductory essay, part I of the book, ‘Sources’, takes the reader through seven key categories of primary material, including governmental, ecclesiastical and legal records, diaries and literary works, print, and visual and material sources. Each chapter addresses how different types of material were produced, whilst also pointing readers towards the most important and accessible physical and digital source collections. Part II, ‘Histories’, takes a thematic approach. Each chapter in this section explores the sources that are used to address major early modern themes, including political and popular cultures, the economy, science, religion, gender, warfare, and global exploration. This collection of essays by leading historians in their respective fields showcases how practitioners research the early modern period, and is an invaluable resource for any student embarking on their studies of the early modern period.
This Companion presents an authoritative review of the current research on women and gender in early modern Europe from a multidisciplinary perspective. The authors examine women’s lives, ideologies of gender and the differences between ideology and reality through the recent research across many disciplines, including history, literary studies, art history, musicology, history of science and medicine and religious studies.
Presented in two volumes, The Ashgate Research Companion to The Sidneys, 1500-1700 assesses the current state of scholarship on members of the Sidney family and their impact, as historical and/or literary figures, in the period 1500-1700. Volume 2: Literature, begins with an exploration of the Sidneys' books and manuscripts and how they circulated, followed by an overview of the contributions of family members -Sir Philip Sidney; Mary Sidney Herbert, Countess of Pembroke; Lady Mary Wroth; Robert Sidney, Earl of Leicester; and William Herbert, Earl of Pembroke - in the genres of prose romance, drama, poetry, psalms and prose. These essays outline major controversies and areas for further research, as well as conducting literary analysis.
Music is a frequently neglected aspect of Japanese culture. It is in fact a highly problematic area, as the Japanese actively introduced Western music into their modern education system in the Meiji period (1868-1911), creating westernized melodies and instrumental instruction for Japanese children from kindergarten upwards. As a result, most Japanese now have a far greater familiarity with Western (or westernized) music than with traditional Japanese music. Traditional or classical Japanese music has become somewhat ghettoized, often known and practised only by small groups of people in social structures which have survived since the pre-modern era. Such marginalization of Japanese music is one of the less recognized costs of Japan's modernization. On the other hand, music in its westernized and modernized forms has an extremely important place in Japanese culture and society, Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, for example, being so widely known and performed that it is arguably part of contemporary Japanese popular and mass culture. Japan has become a world leader in the mass production of Western musical instruments and in innovative methodologies of music education (Yamaha and Suzuki). More recently, the Japanese craze of karaoke as a musical entertainment and as musical hardware has made an impact on the leisure and popular culture of many countries in Asia, Europe and the Americas. This is the first book to cover in detail all genres including court music, Buddhist chant, theatre music, chamber ensemble music and folk music, as well as contemporary music and the connections between music and society in various periods. The book is a collaborative effort, involving both Japanese and English speaking authors, and was conceived by the editors to form a balanced approach that comprehensively treats the full range of Japanese musical culture.
The Ashgate Research Companion to the Counter-Reformation presents a comprehensive examination of recent scholarship on early modern Catholicism in its many guises. It examines how the Tridentine reforms inspired conflict and conversion, and evaluates lives and identities, spirituality, culture and religious change. This wide-ranging and original research guide is a unique resource for scholars and students of European and transnational history.
Bringing together eminent Hardy scholars, The Ashgate Research Companion to Thomas Hardy offers an overview of Hardy scholarship and suggests new directions in Hardy studies. While several collections have surveyed the Hardy landscape, no previous volume has been composed specifically for scholars and advanced graduate students. This companion is specially designed to aid original research on Hardy and serve as the critical basis for Hardy studies in the new millennium.
'Democratization' is a concept often used in academic book titles, yet not many of them deal with the initial breakthrough of democratization. This research companion applies a comparative approach to analyzing debates in a number of countries. It discusses the politics, concepts and histories involved in European democratization as a complex of changes that has altered the conditions of political action and debate in the continent for the past two centuries.
What is a face and how does it relate to personhood? Approaching Facial Difference: Past and Present offers an interdisciplinary exploration of the many ways in which faces have been represented in the past and present, focusing on the issue of facial difference and disfigurement read in the light of shifting ideas of beauty and ugliness. Faces are central to all human social interactions, yet their study has been much overlooked by disability scholars and historians of medicine alike. By examining the main linguistic, visual and material approaches to the face from antiquity to contemporary times, contributors place facial diversity at the heart of our historical and cultural narratives. This cutting-edge collection of essays will be an invaluable resource for humanities scholars working across history, literature and visual culture, as well as modern practitioners in education and psychology.
Few families have contributed as much to English history and literature-indeed, to the arts generally-as the Sidney family. This two-volume Ashgate Research Companion assesses the current state of scholarship on family members and their impact, as historical and literary figures, in the period 1500-1700. Volume 1: Lives, begins with an overview of the Sidneys and politics, providing some links to court events, entertainments, literature, and patronage. The volume gives biographies to prominent high-profile Sidney women and men, as well as sections assessing the influence of the family in the areas of the English court, international politics, patronage, religion, public entertainment, the visual arts, and music. The focus of the second volume is the literary contributions of Sir Philip Sidney; Mary Sidney Herbert, Countess of Pembroke; Lady Mary Wroth; Robert Sidney, Earl of Leicester; and William Herbert, Earl of Pembroke.
The field of monster studies has grown significantly over the past few years and this companion provides a comprehensive guide to the study of monsters and the monstrous from historical, regional and thematic perspectives. The collection reflects the truly multi-disciplinary nature of monster studies, bringing in scholars from literature, art history, religious studies, history, classics, and cultural and media studies. The companion will offer scholars and graduate students the first comprehensive and authoritative review of this emergent field.
Quakerism began in England in the 1650s. George Fox, credited as leading the movement, had an experience of 1647 in which he felt he could hear Christ directly and inwardly without the mediation of text or minister. Convinced of the authenticity of this experience and its universal application, Fox preached a spirituality in which potentially all were ministers, all part of a priesthood of believers, a church levelled before the leadership of God. Quakers are a fascinating religious group both in their original 'peculiarity' and in the variety of reinterpretations of the faith since. The way they have interacted with wider society is a basic but often unknown part of British and American history. This handbook charts their history and the history of their expression as a religious community. This volume provides an indispensable reference work for the study of Quakerism. It is global in its perspectives and interdisciplinary in its approach whilst offering the reader a clear narrative through the academic debates. In addition to an in-depth survey of historical readings of Quakerism, the handbook provides a treatment of the group's key theological premises and its links with wider Christian thinking. Quakerism's distinctive ecclesiastical forms and practices are analysed, and its social, economic, political, and ethical outcomes examined. Each of the 37 chapters considers broader religious, social, and cultural contexts and provides suggestions for further reading and the volume concludes with an extensive bibliography to aid further research.
Drawing on a wide range of drama from across the seventeenth century, including works by Marlowe, Heywood, Jonson, Brome, Davenant, Dryden and Behn, this book situates voyage drama in its historical and intellectual context between the individual act of reading in early modern England and the communal act of modern sightseeing.
In The End of Satisfaction, Heather Hirschfeld recovers the historical specificity and the conceptual vigor of the term “satisfaction” during the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. Focusing on the term’s significance as an organizing principle of Christian repentance, she examines the ways in which Shakespeare and his contemporaries dramatized the consequences of its re- or de-valuation in the process of Reformation doctrinal change. The Protestant theology of repentance, Hirschfeld suggests, underwrote a variety of theatrical plots “to set things right” in a world shorn of the prospect of “making enough” (satisfacere). Hirschfeld’s semantic history traces today’s use of “satisfaction”—as an unexamined measure of inward gratification rather than a finely nuanced standard of relational exchange—to the pressures on legal, economic, and marital discourses wrought by the Protestant rejection of the Catholic sacrament of penance (contrition, confession, satisfaction) and represented imaginatively on the stage. In so doing, it offers fresh readings of the penitential economies of canonical plays including Dr. Faustus, The Revenger’s Tragedy, The Merchant of Venice, and Othello; considers the doctrinal and generic importance of lesser-known plays including Enough Is as Good as a Feast and Love’s Pilgrimage; and opens new avenues into the study of literature and repentance in early modern England.
By taking account of the ways in which early modern women made use of formal and generic structures to constitute themselves in writing, the essays collected here interrogate the discursive contours of gendered identity in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century England. The contributors explore how generic choice, mixture, and revision influence narrative constructions of the female self in early modern England. Collectively they situate women's life writings within the broader textual culture of early modern England while maintaining a focus on the particular rhetorical devices and narrative structures that comprise individual texts. Reconsidering women's life writing in light of recent critical trends-most notably historical formalism-this volume produces both new readings of early modern texts (such as Margaret Cavendish's autobiography and the diary of Anne Clifford) and a new understanding of the complex relationships between literary forms and early modern women's 'selves'. This volume engages with new critical methods to make innovative connections between canonical and non-canonical writing; in so doing, it helps to shape the future of scholarship on early modern women.
Using unpublished manuscript writings, this book reinterprets material, social, literary, philosophical and religious contexts of women's letter-writing in the long 18th century. It shows how letter-writing functions as a form of literary manuscript exchange and argues for manuscript circulation as a method of engaging with the republic of letters.
This book describes the haunting of eighteenth-century England. It is the first in-depth study of the production, circulation and consumption of English ghost stories during the Age of Reason. This period saw the establishment of the ghost story as a literary genre. Handley combines close textual analysis with a broad conception of historical change. She examines a variety of mediums: ballads and chapbooks, newspapers, sermons, medical treatises and scientific journals, novels and plays. She relates the telling of ghost stories to wider changes associated with the Enlightenment, arguing that they played a key role in battles against atheism, republicanism, material excess and secularisation.
It is thought that Swift was opposed to the new science that heralded the beginning of the modern age, but this book interrogates that assumption, tracing the theological, political, and socio-cultural resonances of scientific knowledge in the early eighteenth century, and considering what they can reveal about Swift's imagination.
Matei-Chesnoiu examines the changing understanding of world geography in sixteenth-century England and the concomitant involvement of the London theatre in shaping a new perception of Western European space. Fresh readings are offered of Shakespeare, Jonson, Marlowe, Middleton, Dekker, Massinger, Marston, and others.

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