Religion, Toleration, and British Writing, 1790-1830

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Mark Canuel examines the way that Romantic poets, novelists and political writers criticized the traditional religious conformity of British political unity. Canuel reveals how writers (including Jeremy Bentham, Ann Radcliffe, Maria Edgeworth and Lord Byron) undermined the validity of religion in the British state, and envisioned a tolerant and more organized mode of social inclusion and protection. He asserts that these writers considered their works to be political and literary commentaries on religious toleration.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
" admirable book..."
Studies in Romanticism

"Like the best books, Canuel's makes us account for our assumptions, and its discussions of Coleridge and of Wordsworth provocatively seek to realign our fustier beliefs about the religious apostasies of each writer."
Times Literary Supplement

"Refreshingly exhilirating work of timely scholarship, lucid in its organizing claims, ingenious in the prosecution of its argument, illuminating about particular texts, and ceaselesssly articulate."
Studies in English Literature

"A highly intelligent book on an important topic."
Wordsworth Circle

"excellent writing"
Modern Philology

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Product Details

Meet the Author

Mark Canuel is Assistant Professor in the Department of English at the University of Illinois in Chicago. He has published numerous articles and reviews on Romantic writing.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments; Preface; 1. Romanticism and the writing of toleration; 2. 'Holy hypocrisy' and the rule of belief: Radcliffe's gothics; 3. Coleridge's polemic divinity; 4. Sect and secular economy in the Irish national tale; 5. Wordsworth and 'the frame of social being'; 6. 'Consecrated fancy': Byron and Keats; 7. Conclusion: the inquisitorial stage; Selected bibliography; Index.

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