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Cosmology, Music, Medicine, and Architecture from Antiquity to the Seventeenth Century
Plato’s Timaeus inspired a uniquely enduring interest across disciplines. In the centuries between its composition and the seventeenth century, scholars looked to this dialogue for answers to questions about the structure of the universe and how to live a healthy and happy life. They saw cosmology as vital to medicine and ethics; and, for them, harmony in music and architecture facilitated balance in the human soul. The Legacy of Plato’s Timaeus explores how the dialogue transformed the disciplines of cosmology, music, medicine, and architecture, and how new intellectual and cultural developments in turn shaped and re-contextualized interpretations of Plato’s ideas.

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.
Past and Present in the Eighteenth Century
Editors: and
The Long Quarrel: Past and Present in the Eighteenth Century examines how the intellectual clashes emerging from the Quarrel of the Ancients and the Moderns continued to reverberate until the end of the eighteenth century. This extended Quarrel was not just about the value of ancient and modern, but about historical thought in a broader sense. The tension between ancient and modern expanded into a more general tension between past and present, which were no longer seen as essentially similar, but as different in nature. Thus, a new kind of historical consciousness came into being in the Long Quarrel of the eighteenth century, which also gave rise to new ideas about knowledge, art, literature and politics.

Contributors are: Jacques Bos, Anna Cullhed, Håkon Evju, Vera Faßhauer, Andrew Jainchill, Anton M. Matytsin, Iain McDaniel, Larry F. Norman, David D. Reitsam, Jan Rotmans, Friederike Voßkamp, and Christine Zabel.
Imagination in Renaissance Art and Theory from Botticelli to Michelangelo
Did the Florentine philosopher Marsilio Ficino (1433-99) influence the art of his time? Art historians have been fiercely debating this question for decades. This book starts with Ficino’s views on the imagination as a faculty of the soul, and shows how these ideas were part of a long philosophical tradition and inspired fresh insights. This approach, combined with little known historical material, offers a new understanding of whether, how and why Ficino’s Platonic conceptions of the imagination may have been received in the art of the Italian Renaissance. The discussion explores Ficino’s possible influence on the work of Botticelli and Michelangelo, and examines the appropriation of Ficino’s ideas by early modern art theorists.
Jean-Baptiste Du Bos’ Critical Reflections on Poetry and Painting, first published in French in 1719, is one of the seminal works of modern aesthetics. Du Bos rejected the seventeenth-century view that works of art are assessed by reason. Instead, he believed, audience members have sentiments in response to artworks. Their sentiments are fainter versions of those they would feel in response to actually seeing what the work of art imitates. Du Bos was influenced by John Locke’s empiricism and, in turn, had a major impact on virtually every major eighteenth-century contributor to philosophy of art, including Voltaire, Montesquieu, Diderot, Rousseau, Herder, Lessing, Mendelssohn, Kames, Gerard, and Hume. This is the first modern, annotated and scholarly edition of the Critical Reflections in any language.
Richard Wagner and the Articulation of a German Opera, 1798-1876
By examining theoretical debates about the nature of nineteenth-century German opera and analyzing the genre’s development and its international dissemination, this book shows German opera’s entanglement with national identity formation. The thorough study of German opera debates in the first half of the nineteenth century highlights the esthetic and ideological significance of this relatively neglected repertoire, and helps to contextualize Richard Wagner’s attempts to define German opera and to gain a reputation as the German opera composer par excellence. By interpreting Wagner’s esthetic endeavors as a continuation of previous campaigns for the emancipation of German opera, this book adds an original and significant perspective to discussions about Wagner’s relation to German nationalism.
The Historical Course of an Image
Translators: and
Justice Blindfolded gives an overview of the history of “justice” and its iconography through the centuries. Justice has been portrayed as a woman with scales, or holding a sword, or, since the fifteenth century, with her eyes bandaged. This last symbol contains the idea that justice is both impartial and blind, reminding indirectly of the bandaged Christ on the cross, a central figure in the Christian idea of fairness and forgiveness.
In this rich and imaginative journey through history and philosophy, Prosperi manages to convey a full account of the ways justice has been described, portrayed and imagined.

Translation of Giustizia bendata. Percorsi storici di un'immagine (Einaudi, 2008).
Editors: and
Subjects Barbarian, Monstrous, and Wild responds to a contemporary political climate in which historically invested figures of otherness—barbarians, savages, monsters—have become common discursive currency. Through questionable historical comparisons, politicians and journalists evoke barbaric or primitive forces threatening civilization in order to exacerbate the fear of others, diagnose civilizational decline, or feed nostalgic restorative projects. These evocations often demand that forms of oppression, discrimination, and violence be continued or renewed.
In this context, the collected essays explore the dispossessing effects of these figures but also their capacities for reimagining subjectivity, agency, and resistance to contemporary forms of power. Emphasizing intersections of the aesthetic and the political, these essays read canonical works alongside contemporary literature, film, art, music, and protest cultures. They interrogate the violent histories but also the subversive potentials of figures barbarous, monstrous, or wild, while illustrating the risks in affirmative resignifications or new mobilizations.

Contributors: Sophie van den Bergh, Maria Boletsi, Siebe Bluijs, Giulia Champion, Cui Chen, Tom Curran, Andries Hiskes, Tyler Sage, Cansu Soyupak, Ruby de Vos, Mareen Will
Since its invention by Andrea Alciato, the emblem is inextricably connected to the natural world. Alciato and his followers drew massively their inspiration from it. For their information about nature, the emblem authors were greatly indebted to ancient natural history, the medieval bestiaries, and the 15th- and 16th-century proto-emblematics, especially the imprese. The natural world became the main topic of, for instance, Camerarius’s botanical and zoological emblem books, and also of the ‘applied’ emblematics in drawings and decorative arts. Animal emblems are frequently quoted by naturalists (Gesner, Aldrovandi). This interdisciplinary volume aims to address these multiple connections between emblematics and Natural History in the broader perspective of their underlying ideologies – scientific, artistic, literary, political and/or religious.

Contributors: Alison Saunders, Anne Rolet, Marisa Bass, Bernhard Schirg, Maren Biederbick, Sabine Kalff, Christian Peters, Frederik Knegtel, Agnes Kusler, Aline Smeesters, Astrid Zenker, Tobias Bulang, Sonja Schreiner, Paul Smith, and Karl Enenkel.
Volume Editor:
The book aims rethinking the cultural history of Mediterranean nationalisms between 19th and 20th centuries by tracing their specific approach to antiquity in the forging of a national past.
By focusing on how national imaginaries dealt with this topic and how history and archaeology relied on antiquity, this collection of essays introduces a comparative approach presenting several cases studies concerning many regions including Spain, Italy and Slovenia as well as Albania, Greece and Turkey.
By adopting the perspective of a dialogue among all these Mediterranean political cultures, this book breaks significantly new ground, because it shifts attention on how Southern Europe nationalisms are an interconnected political and cultural experience, directly related to the intellectual examples of Northern Europe, but also developing its own particular trends.

Contributors are: Çiğdem Atakuman, Filippo Carlà, Francisco Garcia Alonso, Maja Gori, Eleni Stefanou, Rok Stergar, Katia Visconti.