Nervous Acts: Essays on Literature, Culture and Sensibility

Nervous Acts: Essays on Literature, Culture and Sensibility

by George S. Rousseau, G. S. Rousseau
     
 

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These essays demonstrate the sweeping influence of the human nervous system on the rise of literature and sensibility in early modern Europe. The brain and nerves have usually been treated as narrow topics within the history of science and medicine. Now George Rousseau, an international authority on the relations of literature and medicine, demonstrates why a broader…  See more details below

Overview

These essays demonstrate the sweeping influence of the human nervous system on the rise of literature and sensibility in early modern Europe. The brain and nerves have usually been treated as narrow topics within the history of science and medicine. Now George Rousseau, an international authority on the relations of literature and medicine, demonstrates why a broader context is necessary. The nervous system was a crucial factor in the rise of recent civilization. More than any other body part, it holds the key to understanding how far back the strains and stresses of modern life - fatigue, depression, mental illness - extend.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

'[George Sebastian Rousseau] is one of our most influential critics of Eighteenth-century British literature and literary culture. Moreover, he was one of the first to develop a genealogy of knowledge which encompassed Eighteenth-century physiology, poetics, criticism, and literary genres...This book will prove immensely popular among scholars at various levels and in various disciplines in the Humanities.' - Dr. Adam Budd, University of Edinburgh

'A scintillating collection of essays by an acknowledged authority in the medical and literary history of the nerves.' - Professor Laurence Brockliss, Oxford University

'This collection of essays by George Rousseau, probably the world's premier scholar of the relations [between] literature and medicine, will offer readers a thorough and valuable insight into his most original research...' - Professor Serge Soupel, The Sorbonne, Paris

'Over the course of three decades, George Rousseau has excavated the foundations of the eighteenth-century interest in sensibility. This collection of essays, which traces the origins of sensibility in early nerve theory, is an indispensable resource for any future study of the anthropology of the imagination.' - Professor Geoffrey Sill, Rutgers University

'Provocative and eloquent... essential reading for the rich history of mind-body conceptualizations, especially for any future assessment of nerves in Western culture.' - Ray Stephanson, University of Saskatchewan

'Rousseau pioneered this field of interdisciplinary studies, and these essays on science and culture are as impressive for their erudition as for their insight.' - The Guardian

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781403934543
Publisher:
Palgrave Macmillan
Publication date:
03/02/2005
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.83(d)

Meet the Author

George S. Rousseau is Emeritus Professor at De Montfort University and now attached to the History Faculty of the University of Oxford.

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