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The Oxford Handbook of the Baroque John D. Lyons (Commonwealth Professor of French, Commonwealth Professor of French, University of Virginia)

The Oxford Handbook of the Baroque By John D. Lyons (Commonwealth Professor of French, Commonwealth Professor of French, University of Virginia)


Baroque, the cultural period extending from the mid-sixteenth to the mid-eighteenth century, created some of the world's most striking monuments, music, artworks, and literature. This Handbook goes beyond all existing studies by presenting Baroque not only as a style, but also as a global cultural phenomenon arising in response to enormous religious, political, and technological changes.

The Oxford Handbook of the Baroque Summary

The Oxford Handbook of the Baroque by John D. Lyons (Commonwealth Professor of French, Commonwealth Professor of French, University of Virginia)

Few periods in history are so fundamentally contradictory as the Baroque, the culture flourishing from the mid-sixteenth to the mid-eighteenth centuries in Europe. When we hear the term Baroque, the first images that come to mind are symmetrically designed gardens in French chateaux, scenic fountains in Italian squares, and the vibrant rhythms of a harpsichord. Behind this commitment to rule, harmony, and rigid structure, however, the Baroque also embodies a deep fascination with wonder, excess, irrationality, and rebellion against order. The Oxford Handbook of the Baroque delves into this contradiction to provide a sweeping survey of the Baroque not only as a style but also as a historical, cultural, and intellectual concept. With its thirty-eight chapters edited by leading expert John D. Lyons, the Handbook explores different manifestations of Baroque culture, from theatricality in architecture and urbanism to opera and dance, from the role of water to innovations in fashion, from mechanistic philosophy and literature to the tension between religion and science. These discussions present the Baroque as a broad cultural phenomenon that arose in response to the enormous changes emerging from the sixteenth century: the division between Catholics and Protestants, the formation of nation-states and the growth of absolutist monarchies, the colonization of lands outside Europe and the mutual impact of European and non-European cultures. Technological developments such as the telescope and the microscope and even greater access to high-quality mirrors altered mankinds view of the universe and of human identity itself. By exploring the Baroque in relation to these larger social upheavals, this Handbook reveals a fresh and surprisingly modern image of the Baroque as a powerful response to an epoch of crisis.

About John D. Lyons (Commonwealth Professor of French, Commonwealth Professor of French, University of Virginia)

John D. Lyons teaches at the University of Virginia and writes about early modern French literature and culture. He is the author of many books, including Tragedy and the Return of the Dead (2018), The Phantom of Chance: From Fortune to Randomness in Seventeenth-Century French Literature (2011), Before Imagination: Embodied Thought From Montaigne to Rousseau (2005), and French Literature: A Very Short Introduction (2010). He is the editor of The Cambridge Companion to French Literature (2015). In 2007 he was named chevalier de la Legion d'Honneur.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments Contributors Introduction 1. The Crisis of the Baroque John D. Lyons Part 1. Visual, Spatial, and Performing Arts 2. Decentering the European Imaginary: A Baroque Taste for India Faith Beasley 3. Line and Trait of the Baroque River Tom Conley 4. Baroque Theatricality Julia Gros de Gasquet 5. Water in the Baroque Garden Stephanie Hanke 6. Fashioning the Baroque Male Martha Hollander 7. Antinomies of the 21st-Century Neobaroque: Cormac McCarthy and Demian Schopf Monika Kaup 8. The Automaton Jessica Keating 9. The Baroque City David Mayernick 10. Surface and Substance: Baroque Dress in Spain and France, 1600-1720 Lesley Ellis Miller 11. Baroque Dance Jennifer Nevile 12. Ibero-American Architecture and Urbanism Paul Niell 13. Baroque Organ Music David Ponsford 14. Ottoman Baroque UEnver Rustem 15. Baroque Opera Downing A. Thomas 16. Machine Plays Helene Visentin 17. Ornamentation Michael Yonan Part 2. Literary and Philosophical Writing 18. Organization of Knowledge from Ramus to Diderot Emmanuel Bury 19. Experience and Knowledge in the Baroque Anthony J. Cascardi 20. Conversation and Civility Delphine Denis 21. The Philosopher's Baroque: Benjamin, Lacan, Deleuze William Egginton 22. The Spanish Baroque Novel Enrique Garcia-Santo-Tomas 23. Baroque Tragedy Blair Hoxby 24. The Baroque as a Literary Concept Katherine Ibbett and Anna More 25. Baroque Discourse Christopher D. Johnson 26. Classical Defense of the Baroque Helene Merlin-Kajman 27. The Baroque and Philosophy Michael Moriarty 28. The Baroque as Anti-Classicism: The French Case Larry F. Norman 29. Is There a Baroque Style of Preaching in Early Modern France? Anne Regent-Susini and Laurent Susini Part 3. Society, Institutions, and Practices 30. Prayer, Meditation, and Retreat Mette Birkedal Bruun 31. Baroque Sexualities Gary Ferguson 32. Paradoxes: Baroque Science Ofer Gal 33. Baroque Diplomacy Timothy Hampton 34. The End of Witch Hunting Erik Midelfort 35. Time and Chronometry Roland Racevskis 36. Court Spectacle and Entertainment Guy Spielmann 37. The Baroque State Barbara Stollberg-Rilinger 38. Saints and Baroque Piety Thomas Worcester Index

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The Oxford Handbook of the Baroque by John D. Lyons (Commonwealth Professor of French, Commonwealth Professor of French, University of Virginia)
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