Realigning Renaissance Culture
Stephan Laqué, Enno Ruge (Eds.)
Realigning Renaissance Culture. Intrusion and Adjustment in Early Modern Drama
ISBN 978-3-88476-714-6, ISBN 3-88476-714-3, 188 S., kt., € 22,50 (2004)
While the extraordinary cultural achievement of the renaissance has been object of praise and extensive study in the humanities, the dynamics forming its source have received surprisingly scant attention. It is the conviction underlying the essays in this collection that this cultural fertility was the effect of an increasing call for mental responsiveness to a plethora of new cultural stimuli. This dynamics of cultural intrusion and the concomitant adjustment considers power as an ordering system that is essentially relational. It is seen as resulting from a complex game which keeps a culture alive in a constant process of creative realigning. However, unlike Hegelian dialectics, this process does not en-visage a teleological evolution. Intrusion may come from any quarter and will leave its imprint whether we are disposed to regard its influence as positive or detrimental to our culture. Consequently, the result of adjustment is equally undirected and rich in potential. Above all, adjustment is always incomplete even if a stable state of alignment appears to have been reached; no act of adjustment can fully 'contain' the irritation of intrusion which remains pro-ductive throughout the cultural formation of a society. The essays in this volume focus on a broad variety of such intrusions in early modern drama ranging from intrusions of types and figures to the influence of new and often disconcerting philosophical concepts.
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