Aesthetics of contingency

Writing, politics, and culture in England, 1639-89

By Matthew C. Augustine

Aesthetics of contingency


  • Hardcover

Book Information

  • Format: eBook
  • ISBN: 978-1-5261-2704-4
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Published Date: June 2018
  • BIC Category: Literature & literary studies / Literature: history & criticism, Literature, HISTORY / Social History, LITERARY CRITICISM / General, Humanities / Social & cultural history


This new study raises fundamental questions about the nature of imaginative writing in the age of 'England's troubles'. Drawing energy from recent debates in Stuart history, this book looks past the traditional watersheds of Restoration and Revolution, plotting the responsiveness of seventeenth-century writers to the tremors of civil conflict and to the enduring crises and contradictions of Stuart governance. Augustine draws freely from the insights and strategies of contextual analysis, close reading, and critical theory in a bid to defamiliarise major texts of the period, from the poetry of young Milton to the brilliant works of adaptation, translation, and bricolage that characterised Dryden's last decade. Muting the antagonisms and conflicts that have dominated previous accounts, Aesthetics of contingency thus proposes to write the literary history of this period anew.

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