Romantic Cult Of Shakespeare

Overview

This is the first book to look at the quasi-religious aspects of the romantic cult of Shakespeare. Focusing on England, Hungary, and some other European countries, the book explores the latent religious patterns in the appropriation of Shakespeare from the 1769 Stratford Jubilee to the tercentenary of 1864. Surveying both the verbal and non-verbal manifestations of the Shakespeare cult, the author highlights their analogies with those of traditional religious cults and shows the appropriation of Shakespeare and ...

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Overview

This is the first book to look at the quasi-religious aspects of the romantic cult of Shakespeare. Focusing on England, Hungary, and some other European countries, the book explores the latent religious patterns in the appropriation of Shakespeare from the 1769 Stratford Jubilee to the tercentenary of 1864. Surveying both the verbal and non-verbal manifestations of the Shakespeare cult, the author highlights their analogies with those of traditional religious cults and shows the appropriation of Shakespeare and his texts to be inseparable from quasi-religious acts of reverence such as literary pilgrimages, relic worship, the erection and dedication of monuments, and public celebrations of anniversaries. This cult made use of some important romantic notions (genius, originality, imagination, transcendental analogies of artistic creation), and the ensuing quasi-transcendental authority was to be utilized for political purposes. The book suggests a theoretical framework and a comprehensive anthropological context for the interpretation of literature.

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Shows parallels between the reception of Shakespeare and traditional religious cults from 1769 to 1864, focusing on England and Hungary, but also considering other European countries. Danichazi (19th- century literature, Hungarian Academy of Sciences) cites both verbal and non-verbal expressions to demonstrate how fans employed such romantic notions as genius, originality, imagination, and transcendental analogies of artistic creation. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

Meet the Author

Péter Dávidházi is Head of Department at the Institute for Literary Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest.

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Table of Contents

Preface
Part I: The Exploration of a Literary Cult: Theoretical Assumptions and Methodological Problems
Part II: The Genesis of a Ritual: The Shakespeare Cult in English Romanticism
Part III: A Middle European Case Study: The Formation of the Shakespeare Cult in Hungary
Part IV: The European Context: Typological Problems of Dissemination
Part V: The Postponed Question of Judgment: Functions and Values Reconsidered
• Notes
• Bibliography
• Index

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