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Brahma in the West
William Blake and the Oriental Renaissance
Brahma in the West
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David Weir - Author
N/A
Hardcover - 184 pages
Release Date: August 2003
ISBN10: 0-7914-5817-2
ISBN13: 978-0-7914-5817-4

Out of Print
Price: $29.95 
Paperback - 184 pages
Release Date: August 2003
ISBN10: 0-7914-5818-0
ISBN13: 978-0-7914-5818-1

Quantity:  
Price: $29.95 
Electronic - 184 pages
Release Date: February 2012
ISBN10: N/A
ISBN13: 978-0-7914-8640-5

Quantity: 
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Summary Read First Chapter image missing

Argues that the myths and ideals of William Blake's poetry were heavily influenced by the Oriental Renaissance—the British discovery of Hindu literature.

Examining William Blake's poetry in relation to the mythographic tradition of the eighteenth century and emphasizing the British discovery of Hindu literature, David Weir argues that Blake's mythic system springs from the same rich historical context that produced the Oriental Renaissance. That context includes republican politics and dissenting theology—two interrelated developments that help elucidate many of the obscurities of Blake's poetry and explain much of its intellectual energy. Weir shows how Blake's poetic career underwent a profound development as a result of his exposure to Hindu mythology. By combining mythographic insight with republican politics and Protestant dissent, Blake devised a poetic system that opposed the powers of Church and King.

“…the [book] provides ample challenges for future studies to address the double relationship implicit in how Blake’s shifting representation of the world around him intersects with the complex and often contradictory relationship between the politics and religion of Orientalism.” — CLIO

Brahma in the West puts Blake’s references to Hinduism, long since brought to our attention through the scholarly intuition of S. Foster Damon, Northrop Frye, and Kathleen Raine, into their contemporary discourses. Weir’s book is a fresh attempt at interpreting the dynamic of Blake’s Zoa and Emanation constellations.” — Blake: An Illustrated Quarterly

“Weir’s project works against the grain … by grappling especially with the problem of Blake’s mythology in the context of the poet’s own times … Brahma in the West is a significant contribution.” — Chicago South Asia Newsletter

"David Weir's approach to Blake's reconstitution of the Indian mythopoetic thought in his own terms—his locating of Blake's vision in terms of Oriental Renaissance—takes into account the history of interpretation of Hindu texts by colonialist and non-colonialist writers of the eighteenth century. As Weir suggests, in many places when the colonialist authors saw 'error and superstition,' Blake's poetic mind encountered mythic richness. More important is the fact that Weir looks into Blake's own misreadings, locating them historically, and he makes a good case for the legitimacy of misreading as part of cross cultural influence. It is all very fascinating." — Lalita Pandit, coeditor of Literary India: Comparative Studies in Aesthetics, Colonialism, and Culture

David Weir is Associate Professor on the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences at The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art. He is the author of Anarchy and Culture: The Aesthetic Politics of Modernism; James Joyce and the Art of Mediation; and Decadence and the Making of Modernism.


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Table of Contents

List of Figures

Acknowledgments

Abbreviations

Introduction

1. Politics

2. Mythography

3. Theology

Postscript

Appendix A. Mythographic Material from Joseph Priestley

Appendix B. Synopsis of The Four Zoas

Notes

Selected Bibliography

Index



Related Subjects
41794/41795(NE/DG/FK)

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