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Commonplace Culture in Western Europe in the Early Modern Period I
Reformation, Counter-Reformation and Revolt


Editors:  Cowling D., Bruun M.B.

Year: 2011
ISBN: 978-90-429-2474-1
Pages: XX-278 p.
Price: 48 EURO

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This is the first of three volumes from the project 'Authority and Persuasion: the Role of Commonplaces in Western Europe (c.1450-c.1800)'. The project was launched by the universities of Copenhagen, Durham and Groningen and involved scholars from a range of disciplines who researched the use of commonplaces as a means of persuasion in the early modern world. Commonplace as a technical term refers to the loci communes collected in late medieval and early modern commonplace books. In the project, however, the notion of commonplace was broadened to include means of persuasion in all kinds of texts as well as the visual arts, theatre, music and other media. This broader notion embraces metaphors, proverbs, figures, and expressions that enjoyed both a history of use in a given society or language community and a wide currency in that society.
This first volume, subtitles 'Reformation, Counter-Reformation and Revolt', focuses on the role of argument from commonplaces, whether linguistic, textual, visual, performative, or musical, during a period of rapid and far-reaching ideological and social change characterised by theological controversies and political turmoil. Progressing from a strict to a more flexible definition of the commonplace, the thirteen contributions to this volume explore the role of the commonplace in the early modern classroom, its place in contemporary polemic and controversy as well as its relationship with (disputed) authority, and trace its presence across a variety of media in the visual, theatrical, and spatial arts.

The second volume concerns 'Consolidation of God-given Power', and the third volume deals with 'Legitimation of Authority'.

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