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Farewell to Shulamit. Spatial and Social Diversity in the Song of Songs

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Book Series: Jewish Thought, Philosophy, and Religion ISSN: 2509-7431 ISBN: 9783110500882 9783110498875 Year: Volume: 2 Pages: viii, 170 DOI: 10.1515/9783110500882 Language: English
Publisher: De Gruyter
Subject: Religion --- The Bible
Added to DOAB on : 2017-08-28 16:06:59
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The Song of Songs, a lyric cycle of love scenes without a narrative plot, has often been considered as the Bible’s most beautiful and enigmatic book. The present study questions the still dominant exegetical convention that merges all of the Song’s voices into the dialogue of a single couple, its composite heroine Shulamit being a projection screen for norms of womanhood. An alternative socio-spatial reading, starting with the Hebrew text’s strophic patterns and its references to historical realia, explores the poem’s artful alternation between courtly, urban, rural, and pastoral scenes with their distinct characters. The literary construction of social difference juxtaposes class-specific patterns of consumption, mobility, emotion, power structures, and gender relations. This new image of the cycle as a detailed poetic frieze of ancient society eventually leads to a precise hypothesis concerning its literary and religious context in the Hellenistic age, as well as its geographical origins in the multiethnic borderland east of the Jordan. In a Jewish echo of anthropological skepticism, the poem emphasizes the plurality and relativity of the human condition while praising the communicative powers of pleasure, fantasy, and multifarious Eros.

From the Renaissance to the Modern World

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ISBN: 9783906980362 9783906980355 Year: Pages: VIII, 128 DOI: 10.3390/books978-3-906980-35-5 Language: English
Publisher: MDPI - Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute
Added to DOAB on : 2014-07-01 11:06:23
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On November 11 and 12, 2011, a symposium held at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill honored John M. Headley, Emeritus Professor of History. The organizers, Professor MelissaBullard—Headley’s colleague in the department of history at that university—along with ProfessorsPaul Grendler (University of Toronto) and James Weiss (Boston College), as well as Nancy GraySchoonmaker, coordinator of the Program in Medieval and Early Modern Studies—assembled presenters, respondents, and dozens of other participants from Western Europe and North America to celebrate the career of their prolific, versatile, and influential colleague whose publications challenged and often changed the ways scholars think about Martin Luther, Thomas More, the Habsburg empire,early modern Catholicism, globalization, and multiculturalism.This special issue contains the major papers delivered at the symposium, revised to take account of colleagues’ suggestions at the conference and thereafter. John O’Malley studies the censorship ofsacred art with special reference to Michelangelo’s famed “Last Judgment” and the Council of Trent.John Martin sifts Montaigne’s skepticism about contemporaneous strategies for self-disclosure andself-discipline. Stressing the significance of grammar, Constantin Fasolt helps us recapture theRenaissance’s and the early modern religious reformations’ disagreements with antiquity. RonaldWitt’s reappraisal of humanist historiography probes Petrarch’s perspectives on ancient Rome. JohnMcManamon includes tales of theft and market manipulation in his study of the early moderncollection and circulation of books and manuscripts, the commodification of study. To “nuance” John Headley’s conclusions about “the Europeanization of the world,” Jerry Bentley repossesses the influence of other than European societies on several European theorists of human rights. Kate Lowe’s remarks on the reconstruction of race in the Renaissance explores the effects of a critical mistranslation on what being black was taken to mean by Europeans. David Gilmartin introduces readers to the shape of democracy in nineteenth- and twentieth-century India, as well as to the understandings of popular sovereignty that affected elections, suggesting strides that scholars might take “toward a worldwide history of voting”.The remarkable range of these contributions comes close to reflecting the range of ProfessorHeadley’s interests and achievements, which James M. Weiss maps in his tribute, identifying“unifying themes” in Headley’s work.

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