Myths Of Renaissance Individualism

Paperback | August 22, 2006

byJohn Jeffries Martin

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The idea that the Renaissance witnessed the emergence of the modern individual remains a powerful myth. In this important new book Martin examines the Renaissance self with attention to both social history and literary theory and offers a new typology of Renaissance selfhood which was at once collective, performative and porous. At the same time, he stresses the layered qualities of the Renaissance self and the salient role of interiority and notions of inwardness in the shaping of identity.

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The idea that the Renaissance witnessed the emergence of the modern individual remains a powerful myth. In this important new book Martin examines the Renaissance self with attention to both social history and literary theory and offers a new typology of Renaissance selfhood which was at once collective, performative and porous. At the...

John Jeffries Martin is Professor of History at Trinity University.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:224 pages, 8.53 × 5.47 × 0.43 inPublished:August 22, 2006Publisher:Palgrave MacmillanLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:023000640X

ISBN - 13:9780230006409

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Table of Contents

Preface * Acknowledgements * "Individualism" - A Word Unknown to our Ancestors * The Inquisitor's Questions * Spiritual Journeys * A Journeyman's Feast of Fools Possessions * The Proffered Heart * Myths of Identity - An Essay * Notes * Bibliography * Index

Editorial Reviews

"Beautifully written, richly documented, and philosophically nuanced, John J. Martin's Myths of Renaissance Individualism sets a new standard in the field of Renaissance studies...Martin explodes the anachronistic stereotypes of previous generations of scholarship concerning the Renaissance individual, and gives us a much-needed map of the frontiers of the early modern self."--Jon R. Snyder, University of California, Santa Barbara"Martin's contribution to the much debated question of Renaissance individualism will be enormously stimulating to all students of the period. In my own field of the history of art, his recasting of the debate has particularly important implications for our reading of Renaissance portraiture. More generally, his central emphasis on the dynamic relationship in the period between inner self and social identity is relevant to a more balanced interpretation of every aspect of its visual culture." -- Peter Humfrey, University of St Andrews"This is a major contribution to the study of Renaissance individualism. John Jeffries Martin offers a lively and readable revisionist account, which suggests that rather than being either autonomous or constructed, the Renaissance self is relational. Building from primarily Italian examples, Martin's study will be essential reading for all students of Renaissance culture and ideology."--Richard D. Brown, The Open University