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Volume Editor: Angelique Richardson
‘What is emotion?’ pondered the young Charles Darwin in his notebooks. How were the emotions to be placed in an evolutionary framework? And what light might they shed on human-animal continuities? These were among the questions Darwin explored in his research, assisted both by an acute sense of observation and an extraordinary capacity for fellow feeling, not only with humans but with all animal life. After Darwin: Animals, Emotions, and the Mind explores questions of mind, emotion and the moral sense which Darwin opened up through his research on the physical expression of emotions and the human–animal relation. It also examines the extent to which Darwin’s ideas were taken up by Victorian writers and popular culture, from George Eliot to the Daily News. Bringing together scholars from biology, literature, history, psychology, psychiatry and paediatrics, the volume provides an invaluable reassessment of Darwin’s contribution to a new understanding of the moral sense and emotional life, and considers the urgent scientific and ethical implications of his ideas today.
Ecocriticism and the Event of Postcolonial Fiction
Author: Roman Bartosch
This book addresses the role and potential of literature in the process of contesting and re-evaluating concepts of nature and animality, describing one’s individual environment as the starting point for such negotiations. It employs the notion of the ‘literary event’ to discuss the specific literary quality of verbal art conceptualised as EnvironMentality. EnvironMentality is grounded on the understanding that fiction does not explain or second scientific and philosophical notions but that it poses a fundamental challenge to any form of knowledge manifesting in processes determined by the human capacity to think beyond a given hermeneutic situation. Bartosch foregrounds the dialectics of understanding the other by means of literary interpretation in ecocritical readings of novels by Amitav Ghosh, Zakes Mda, Yann Martel, Margaret Atwood and J.M. Coetzee, arguing that EnvironMentality helps us as readers of fiction to learn from the books we read that which can only be learned by means of reading: to “think like a mountain” (Aldo Leopold) and to know “what it is like to be a bat” (Thomas Nagel).
Textures of Identity in the North of England
Volume Editor: Christoph Ehland
Thinking Northern offers new approaches to the processes of identity formation which are taking place in the diverse fields of cultural, economic and social activity in contemporary Britain. The essays collected in this volume discuss the changing physiognomy of Northern England and provide a mosaic of recent thought and new critical thinking about the textures of regional identity in Britain. Looking at the historical origin of Northern identities and at current attitudes to them, the book explores the way received mental images about the North are re-deployed and re-contained in the ever-changing socio-cultural set-up of society in Northern England. The contributors address representation of Northernness in such diverse fields as the music scene, multicultural spaces, the heritage industries, new architecture, the arts, literature and film.
Volume Editors: Robert Burden and Stephan Kohl
In the papers collected in this, the first volume of the Spatial Practices series, Englishness is reflected in the spaces it occupies or dwells in. Broadly influenced by a renewed and growing interest in questions of cultural identity, its emergence in Victorian theories and fictions of nationality, and the new cultural geography, the papers cover a rich variety of spaces and places which have been appropriated for cultural meanings: the rural countryside and farmland of the Home Counties in the early nineteenth century as Arcadian idyll in Cobbett, as the land to die for in war propaganda, and as nostalgia for a unified, organic English culture in Lawrence, Morton and Priestley’s travel writing, but also in the Shell Tourist Guides to motoring in rural England; English moorland; the sacred geographies of monuments in Hardy and others; the traditional seaside deconstructed in Martin Parr’s photography, and the sea as English Victorian imperial territory and its symbolic breezes in Froude’s travel writing. The English landscape is also a paradigm for the description of other places in D. H. Lawrence’s travel writing or for the colonial territory itself in Rushdie’s writing India, a displacement of other landscapes. This collection of papers examines the assumption that constructions of rural England provide the basis for an understanding of Englishness.
Perspectives on Gender and Class in the History of British and Irish Psychiatry
Volume Editor: Anne Digby
This innovative collection of essays employs historical and sociological approaches to provide important case studies of asylums, psychiatry and mental illness in England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland. Leading scholars in the field working on a variety of geographical, temporal, socio-cultural, economic and political contexts, show how class and gender have historically affected and conditioned the thinking, language, and processes according to which society identified and responded to the mentally ill. Contributors to this volume focus on both class and gender and thus are able to explore their interaction, whereas previous publications addressed class or gender incidentally, partially, or in isolation. By adopting this dual focus as its unifying theme, the volume is able to supply new insights into such interesting topics as patient careers, the relationship between lay and professional knowledge of insanity, the boundaries of professional power, and the creation of psychiatric knowledge. Particularly useful to student readers (and to those new to this academic field) is a substantive and accessible introduction to existing scholarship in the field, which signposts the ways in which this collection challenges, adjusts and extends previous perspectives.