Structures of Feeling in Seventeenth-Century Cultural Expression (UCLA Clark Memorial Library Series)
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Between the waning of the Renaissance and the beginning of the Enlightenment, many fundamental aspects of human behaviour - from expressions of gender to the experience of time - underwent radical changes. While some of these transformations were recorded in words, others have survived in non-verbal cultural media, notably the visual arts, poetry, theatre, music, and dance. Structures of Feeling in Seventeenth-Century Cultural Expression explores how artists made use of these various cultural forms to grapple with human values in the increasingly heterodox world of the 1600s.
Essays from prominent historians, musicologists, and art critics examine methods of non-verbal cultural expression through the broad themes of time, motion, the body, and global relations. Together, they show that seventeenth-century cultural expression was more than just an embryonic stage within Western artistic development. Instead, the contributors argue that this period marks some of the most profound changes in European subjectivities.
play some role, it doesn’t influence us as strongly as our present states do. Once again we have the interesting situation we had with respect to Galileo: how can Spinoza represent this kind of temporality in a mathematical structure? How can we give timeless truths about a fundamentally temporal state of affairs? How can we represent the agent’s relations with future (and past) at a given moment so that we can apply the timeless apparatus of the geometrical method of argument to derive these
earlier speculative questions he had raised that were inspired by Mauduit’s Académie: Can we determine what attributes the most perfect musician should have? Is it possible to learn through theory how to compose and sing the The Sound World of Father Mersenne 69 most perfect melody possible for any given subject? And is it therefore possible to know how to judge music perfectly?26 As for the question of composing a perfect melody, Mersenne thought that the science of combinatorics might be of
see proceeding from your inventive skill. If the Amerindians failed to understand French ways and could not imitate them successfully, Champlain continued, they would offer up their own children for adoption to French families: ‘and if we cannot understand, you shall take our children who will be like your own.’29 Similarly, the French newspaper, the Mercure François, offered an account of the French encounter with the Tupinamba in Brazil. Their chief supposedly welcomed the French into their
God through human agency,’ a definition that potentially includes preaching and edifying.12 However, the criterion for inclusion of writings surveyed here is ecstatic inspiration, with a special focus on ecstatic vocality. For the sake of convenience, and in agreement with prevailing definitions, I will refer to the ecstatic or inspired vocalization discussed here as prophecy.13 Prophets like Anna Trapnel manifested the divine through ‘prayers and spiritual songs,’ often uttered in a state of
of a force other than reason. It is telling that Dissenting prophecy originated in a period of revolution when the Stuart monarchical order was already ‘turned upside down,’ in the words of historian Christopher Hill.60 At a moment when the integrity of the English nation was threatened as never before, the inspired voices of radical prophets were perceived by many as a sign of the nation’s monstrous disunity. Likewise, indigenous song in ceremonial contexts threatened to compromise the