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Displaying: 41-60 of 2365 documents


41. Renascence: Volume > 71 > Issue: 1
Michael Boler Screwtape’s Remedy for Love: C. S. Lewis and Ovid
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In the Ars Amatoria Ovid claims to make his audience experts in love; in the Remedia Amoris he teaches them how to fall out of love. These two poems are masterpieces of satirical comedy. At first glance Ovidian satire seems worlds apart from The Screwtape Letters of C.S. Lewis. While written for entirely different aims and differing in many obvious aspects, both works describe the surest means by which to suffocate love. For Ovid, it is romantic love that must be extinguished; for Screwtape, it is the love of God. While it might seem that the irony of The Screwtape Letters is distinctively modern, Lewis’s special form of irony finds its ancient precedent and model in the master of mock-didacticism, Ovid. Not only can the influence of Ovid’s Remedia Amoris be seen in the broad themes contained in The Screwtape Letters, but many of Screwtape’s specific avenues of attack were recommended by Ovid centuries ago.
42. Renascence: Volume > 71 > Issue: 1
W. Brett Wiley George Saunders’s 400-Pound CEO: Goodness or Ideology
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George Saunders, in “The 400-Pound CEO,” displays a theme that appears in many of his stories and that he has talked about in numerous interviews. Jeffrey, the protagonist and narrator of the story, confronts the dissonance that exists between enacting goodness and theological or ideological belief. The story ultimately suggests a Buddhist approach, what Saunders explains as a practical means of “react[ing] accordingly” to life as “that-which-is.”
43. Renascence: Volume > 71 > Issue: 1
Josh Pittman The Most Important Virtue?: The Surprising Recurrence of Temperance in the Pearl Manuscript
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The narrator of the Middle English Cleanness states that God punishes sexual sin more harshly than any other sin. This essay argues that the rest of the BL Cotton Nero A.x manuscript continues to develop the virtue of temperance, which governs sexual behavior, as a central theme. Pearl uses temperance to bring home the dreamer’s sin and God’s justice, while Patience and SGGK employ the interrelation between temperance and fortitude in ways that make temperance foundational. Interrogating the interdependence of the virtues allows the poet to challenge the traditional hierarchy of virtues, in which temperance is the lowest, thus making the case that temperance is paradoxically foundational to other virtues, like justice and fortitude. In this way, the poems not only make a case for the value of temperance, but they also expose ambiguities in orthodox accounts of the virtues.
44. Renascence: Volume > 71 > Issue: 1
Notes on Contributors
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45. Renascence: Volume > 70 > Issue: 4
Kevin J. Gardner The Church Elegy: Recuperating Anglican Memory in Post-war English Poetry
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Following the pattern set by Philip Larkin and John Betjeman, numerous post-war English poets responded to the decline of the Church of England as a physical and cultural fabric by composing elegies on the Church. Steeping their poems in the collective memory of Anglicanism, they commemorate church buildings and churchyards as sites of collective memory, endow the history and landscape of Britain with Christian mythology, and lament the social ramifications of a post-Christian culture. This essay demonstrates that a poetic lament for the loss of Anglican hegemony is a common motif in post-war English poetry and defines genre of “church elegy.” What is mourned is not the loss of Christianity itself but the end of a common cultural identity once sustained by the Church of England. In response, poets fretted by the disorder and fragmentation of modern British society are engaged in an effort to resuscitate Anglican cultural memory.
46. Renascence: Volume > 70 > Issue: 4
Brian Barbour “His Trees Stood Rising Above Him”: Philosophical Thomism in Flannery O’Connor
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Although Thomism, “hillbilly” or otherwise, is central to Flannery O’Connor’s thought and art, it has received precious little attention from those who comment on her work. Still, if one knows how to look, it is pervasive, ordering and animating her fiction and helping to ground her comic vision. But it is so thoroughly, artistically, integrated into her work that most readers seem to pass over it leaving it unnoticed and unremarked. Yet it is present in at least six ways and often they are so intertwined as to reinforce one another: as a metaphysics of being (The Violent Bear It Away, “A View of the Woods” and passim); as an epistemology of moderate realism (“Good Country People”); as a historical narrative showing the loss of the first two (passim in her general regard for the Cartesian Protagonist); as an anthropology of the human person as a composite of body and soul (“The Life You Save May Be Your Own”); as a natural law morality (“A Stroke of Good Fortune,” “A Good Man Is Hard to Find”); and as an objective aesthetics (“A Temple of the Holy Ghost,” “The Enduring Chill”). Understanding the basics of her philosophical Thomism enables the reader to grasp a good deal of what actually characterizes her fiction and yet is routinely missed.
47. Renascence: Volume > 70 > Issue: 4
Yanbin Kang Dickinson’s Air/Wind: “Lonesome Glee” and Poetics of Emptiness
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Combining reception theorists’s emphasis upon the function of readers for meaning production with Bakhtin’s model of exotopic intercultural relation, this essay argues that for Chinese readers, Dickinson works as part of a long meditative tradition. The discussion positions the air and wind in the center of her image cluster, examining the formation of her poetics of emptiness that is marked by a negative tendency. In this vein, Dickinson’s “lonesome Glee,” which is often associated with deprivation, pain and lack, is read as a manifestation of wandering at ease, a spiritual ideal that resonates with Daoism and Chan Buddhism. Her effort to reconfigure heaven, as evidenced in a subset of poems including “Peace is a fiction of our Faith -” (Fr971), illuminates how she uses apophatic strategies to negotiate the Christian dogmas, gradually achieving a knowledge and articulation that intriguingly echo Chinese philosophies.
48. Renascence: Volume > 70 > Issue: 4
Zhiyong Mo Chinese Calligraphy and Painting
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49. Renascence: Volume > 70 > Issue: 4
Notes on Contributors
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50. Renascence: Volume > 70 > Issue: 3
Adam Glover Eucharist and the Poetics of Failure
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This article examines “Poem of the Eucharistic Bread” (1946) by the underappreciated twentieth-century Argentine Catholic poet Francisco Luis Bernárdez (1900-1978). It contends that “Poem of the Eucharistic Bread” is not only a poem about the Eucharist, but also a kind of allegory of the Eucharist, one whose poetic diction frames the process of poiesis as significantly analogous to the sacramental character of the Eucharist itself. In the process, the article also suggests that Bernárdez’s rare combination of poetic talent and theological sensitivity ought to win him a wider readership among scholars interested in the relationship between literature and theology.
51. Renascence: Volume > 70 > Issue: 3
Martin Brick Death, Resurrection, and Meaning in Finnegans Wake: A Process Theology Approach
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This essay uses process theology, and branch of theology that emphasizes a teleological perspective regarding sin and suffering, to examine the treatment of death and the uncanny in James Joyce’s Finnegans Wake. The attitude of the mourners of Tim Finnegan from the first chapter of the novel is compared to the attitude of ALP in her closing monologue, with each view corresponding to a different variety of eschatology, futurized (focused on the afterlife) and realized (how knowledge of the end influences lived existence). ALP’s hopeful demeanor illustrates a balance of these two types, and despite Joyce’s denunciation of organized religion, promotes a deeper spiritual existence and self-reflection.
52. Renascence: Volume > 70 > Issue: 3
Peter Whiteford Hopkins’s Remarks on his ‘Terrible Posthumous Sonnets’
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In 1885, Gerard Manley Hopkins wrote two letters to Robert Bridges in which he referred briefly to several sonnets that he had recently written, and that he intended to send. He did not name the poems, and his subsequent failure to send them left the sonnets permanently unidentified and the remarks about them inevitably cryptic. Nevertheless, subsequent critics have readily and almost unanimously agreed that the remarks refer to some of the poems collectively known as the terrible sonnets; in a curiously circular argument, they have interpreted the remarks in the light of their reading of the sonnets and have, at the same time, used the remarks to shed light on the poems. Critical attention has focused particularly, and almost exclusively, on two remarks: in the first letter, the observation that one sonnet was “written in blood,” and in the second, the assertion that four of the sonnets came “like inspirations unbidden and against my will”. In this article, I argue that these remarks have been misinterpreted — in part, because of assumptions made about the putative group of terrible sonnets and in part through a failure to properly contextualize those letters.
53. Renascence: Volume > 70 > Issue: 3
Alan Blackstock Chesterton, Eliot, and Modernist Heresy
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G. K. Chesterton and T. S. Eliot both employed the concepts of orthodoxy and heresy to evaluate the work and influence of some of the most prominent writers of their day. One of Chesterton’s best-known books is titled Orthodoxy, (1908) and one of his earliest works of literary criticism was a collection of articles first written for the Daily News and later published under the title Heretics (1905). T.S. Eliot delivered a series of lectures at the University of Virginia in 1933 that were later collected and published as After Strange Gods: A Primer of Modern Heresy. In these lectures, Eliot, like Chesterton in his newspaper columns, illustrates the “limiting and crippling effect of a separation from tradition and orthodoxy” on writers whom he otherwise admires. Both authors invoke the concepts of orthodoxy to identify these threatened traditions and of heresy and heretic to identify the forces and figures that constitute the principal threats.
54. Renascence: Volume > 70 > Issue: 3
Notes on Contributors
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55. Renascence: Volume > 70 > Issue: 2
John Curran, Jr. A Note From the Editor
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56. Renascence: Volume > 70 > Issue: 2
Michael VanderWeele The Siren and the Admiral: A Contest of Identity-Formation
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This essay argues for a more civic interpretation of Dante’s dream of the Siren in Purgatorio 19 by connecting the reprimand and consolation that surround the dream to the reprimand and consolation that surround the Old Testament images of Israel as faithless spouse—and that are typical of other parts of the Divine Comedy. Such a reading fits the liturgical character of the Purgatorio better than the dominant post-Freudian readings can and it lets the passage speak to civic as well as personal questions. If the Siren is more than a psychological image, then the way we see her counterpart, Beatrice, can be broadened as well. In fact, she might be seen as image of a Christian body politic as well as source of Dante’s affection. This puts the Divine Comedy into closer connection with Augustine’s City of God and with Boethius’ Consolation as well as with Israel as God’s spouse.
57. Renascence: Volume > 70 > Issue: 2
Thomas P. Flint On the Significance of Civil War References in Flannery O’Connor’s “A Good Man is Hard to Find”
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While many authors have written about the undertone of violence present throughout Flannery O'Connor's short story "A Good Man is Hard to Find," little has been said about the specific references in the story to the Civil War. These references, though, serve to highlight questions concerning evil, guilt, and punishment that come to the fore especially in the culminating scene between the grandmother and The Misfit. In the end, the story seems to be suggesting, trying to determine the fittingness of the evils we (as individuals or as a society) encounter may best be seen as a further manifestation of the pride that precipitated our original Fall; these are matters best left to God's judgment, not to ours.
58. Renascence: Volume > 70 > Issue: 2
John Coates The numinous in Walter de la Mare’s Memoirs of a Midget
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Adopting the premise that Walter de la Mare’s writing cannot be fully understood without attending to its moral, spiritual and religious dimensions, this paper examines in detail his longest and most important novel, Memoirs of a Midget (1921). It draws analogies between his movement from a dogmatic moralism towards a sense of the numinous and compares them with similar tendencies in Arthur Machin and Algernon Blackwood.
59. Renascence: Volume > 70 > Issue: 2
Notes on Contributors
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60. Renascence: Volume > 70 > Issue: 1
John E. Curran Jr. A Note from the Editor
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