Imagining Methodism in Eighteenth Century Britain PDF/EPUB

Imagining Methodism in Eighteenth Century Britain In the eighteenth century British Methodism was an object of both derision and desire Many popular eighteenth century works ridiculed Methodists yet often the very same plays novels and prints that cast Methodists as primitive irrational or deluded also betrayed a thinly cloaked fascination with the experiences of divine presence attributed to the new evangelical movement Misty G Anderson argues that writers actors and artists used Methodism as a concept to interrogate the boundaries of the self and the fluid relationships between religion and literature between reason and enthusiasm and between theater and belief Imagining Methodism situates works by Henry Fielding John Cleland Samuel Foote William Hogarth Horace Walpole Tobias Smollett and others alongside the contributions of John Wesley Charles Wesley and George Whitefield in order to understand how Methodism's brand of experimental religion was both born of the modern world and perceived as a threat to itAnderson's analysis of reactions to Methodism exposes a complicated interlocking picture of the religious and the secular terms less transparent than they seem in current critical usage Her argument is not about the lives of eighteenth century Methodists; rather it is about Methodism as it was imagined in the work of eighteenth century British writers and artists where it served as a sign of sexual cognitive and social danger By situating satiric images of Methodists in their popular contexts she recaptures a vigorous cultural debate over the domains of religion and literature in the modern British imaginationRich in cultural and literary analysis Anderson's argument will be of interest to students and scholars of the eighteenth century religious studies theater and the history of gender

1 thoughts on “Imagining Methodism in Eighteenth Century Britain

  1. Joshua Joshua says:

    A worthwhile read Misty Anderson brings the uestions of selfhood and belief to life in her examination of the interplay between the enthusiastic Methodist and their counterparts in the worlds of literature and theatre 18th Century Methodism she argues challenged the narrow confines of rationalist identity that modernity had set up As such it was often viewed as politically sexually and intellectually suspect Yet it also held a fascination for many who longed for a belief that appealed to their emotion The worlds of theatre and aesthetics found themselves in a sense natural competitors to Methodism due to it theatrical presence and the religious enthusiasm which mirrors or is mirrored in the aesthete losing herself in the sublime Through the historical example of 18th century Methodism read with the lens of current debates in critical theory Anderson makes the case that reading the modern self as necessarily secular involves a distortion of cultural history Her hope is to move dialogue beyond recalcitrant religious and ideological fundamentalisms Her contribution reading the complexities and ambiguities of secular and religious life in a particular historical episode is a significant step

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *