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Shaftesbury, Akenside, and the Discipline of the Imagination
Eighteenth-Century Stoic Poetics: Shaftesbury, Akenside, and the Discipline of the Imagination offers a fresh perspective on the eighteenth-century poetics of Lord Shaftesbury and Mark Akenside. This book traces the two authors’ debt to Roman Stoic spiritual exercises and early modern conceptions of the care of the self, which informs their view of the poetic imagination as a bundle of techniques designed to manage impressions, cultivate right images in the mind and rectify judgement. Alexandra Bacalu traces the roots of this articulation in early modern writings on the imagination, as well as in Restoration and Augustan debates on wit, exploring the fruitful tension between ideas of imaginative enthusiasm and imaginative regulation that it provokes.
Gambhīravaṃśaja’s Nyāyasūtravivaraṇa—First Adhyāya
The Nyāyasūtravivaraṇa written in the first centuries of the 2nd millennium CE, provides the most accessible introduction to the core teachings of early Nyāya. Excerpting from the two earliest and most important treatise of this tradition—the Nyāyabhāṣya and Nyāyavārttika—Gambhīravaṃśaja created a comprehensive yet concise digest.
The present work contains not only a critical edition of the first chapter based on all known textual sources, but also a complete documentation of the variants, a comprehensive study of the parallel passages, a detailed discussion of the preparation and processing of the text-critical data, and a detailed documentation of the Grantha Tamil, Telugu and Kannada scripts.
Series Editor:
This book series takes an interdisciplinary approach, examining the literature of modernity through consideration of its diverse phenomena and contexts.
While the Early Modern Era was marked in cultural-historical terms by the Renaissance, economically by the Industrial Revolution and politically by the French Revolution as well as nationalism, a first high point in modern literature was achieved by insights drawn from the natural and human sciences, foremost the fields of psychoanalysis, the quantum hypothesis, and the theory of relativity. A necessary condition for the interdisciplinary approach, therefore, in addition to the consideration of socio-cultural implications, is engagement with the history of thought, which makes the development of the Modern Era comprehensible.
This premise provides the basis for the examination of the numerous phenomena of modernity through the lens of literary texts, stemming from all applicable national literatures.

Authors are cordially invited to submit proposals and/or full manuscripts to the publisher at BRILL, Masja Horn.

Abstract

Premodern manuscript production was fluid. Books and papers freely changed hands, often against their authors’ wishes. In the absence of copyright laws, certain countermeasures arose. This study considers one of them: self-commentary, meaning an author’s explanations on his own works. The article deals with two cases of medieval self-commentary across linguistic and cultural boundaries: the Arabic author and rationalist Abū al-ʿAlāʾ al-Maʿarrī (d. 1057 CE), and the professional Byzantine littérateur John Tzetzes (d. 1180 CE). After an overview of their lives and works, with a focus on the key role of self-explanation, the article considers their respective manuscript cultures, which involved face-to-face educational settings that nonetheless permitted widespread copying. There follows a discussion of textual materiality, which reveals a mutual concern to avoid tampering or misinterpretation. Then, the article shows how both men tried to direct readers by exploiting language’s capacity for multiple meanings. The conclusion ponders the relevance of this study for problems posed by digital book technology.

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In: Philological Encounters
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In 1508 the legendary Sulṭān of Sindh, Niẓām al-Dīn Jām Nindō, of the Samma dynasty (1351–1522) died. The Sulṭān’s death occasioned a major political shift in Sindh at the turn of the sixteenth century, which ultimately led to the fall of the Sammas in 1522. This period is marked with repeated instances of military and civil unrests and dethroning attempts. The primary theme of this article is to demonstrate that these particular cycles of political instability defined the parameters of contemporary architectural undertakings. For this purpose, two of the most ambitious funerary constructions in the Samma royal necropolis of Maklī at Thatta (southern Sindh)—the tomb enclosure of Samma military commander Mubārak Khān and the monumental mausoleum of Sulṭān Niẓām al-Dīn—are reassessed. The article also locates political undertones in the architecture of these mausolea, and deciphers the implicit subtext interlaced into their epigraphic as well as visual motifs.

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In: Philological Encounters
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In: Philological Encounters
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In this Philological Conversation, Carlo Ginzburg reflects on the place of philology in his work and explores the connections between philology, microhistory, and casuistry. We talk about the people who inspired his early thinking, including his father Leone Ginzburg, his mother Natalia, and his grandfather, moving on to Erich Auerbach, Leo Spitzer, and Sebastiano Timpanaro. We discuss the ethical and political implications of his research and reflect on the power of philology to give voice to the marginalized and suppressed. The conversation, which was edited for readability, took place during the Corona pandemic over three meetings via Zoom on July 13, September 10, and September 17, 2021.

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In: Philological Encounters
In: Philological Encounters
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The ethnicity concept frames discussions of regional politics in Pakistan today, as in many other parts of the world. However, this concept only became established in popular and academic discourse in Pakistan in the late 1980s. This article considers the conceptual apparatus for apprehending the region, in particular the region of Sindh, that was in place before ethnicity. It argues that Sindh was a heterogeneous idea articulated at times at the intersection, and at other times in the divergence, of concepts of religion, race, language, and nation. The article considers three historic moments in the context of broad global transformations: Sindh’s communalization and racialization in the nineteenth century; provincialization in the early twentieth century; and finally its culturalization in the early decades of Pakistan’s history. In doing so, it charts a history of the region before ethnicity and also offers a genealogy of the region as a cultural entity.

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In: Philological Encounters
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This article focuses on the lotus motif employed as an architectural decoration in the monuments of the Maklī necropolis from the late fourteenth to the mid-seventeenth centuries. Through a close analysis of the form and its particular use in micro-architecture, a use connected with allusions to light and divine radiance, I explore the formation of a distinctly local aesthetic idiom in Sindh. This article demonstrates that builders and artisans at Maklī engaged in a practice of architectural citation that involved the serial replication of specific forms and their meanings. In so doing, it argues that history was and is seen as cumulative at the Maklī necropolis.

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In: Philological Encounters