Aesthetics and Sexuality in Britain, 1750-1832
By (author) Richard C. Sha
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Perverse Romanticism by Richard C. Sha
Book DescriptionRichard C. Sha's revealing study considers how science shaped notions of sexuality, reproduction, and gender in the Romantic period. Through careful and imaginative readings of various scientific texts, the philosophy of Immanuel Kant and Longinus, and the works of such writers as William Blake, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Mary Wollstonecraft, and Lord Byron, Sha explores the influence of contemporary aesthetics and biology on literary Romanticism. Revealing that ideas of sexuality during the Romantic era were much more fluid and undecided than they are often characterized in the existing scholarship, Sha's innovative study complicates received claims concerning the shift from perversity to perversion in the nineteenth century. He observes that the questions of perversity-or purposelessness-became simultaneously critical in Kantian aesthetics, biological functionalism, and Romantic ideas of private and public sexuality. The Romantics, then, sought to reconceptualize sexual pleasure as deriving from mutuality rather than from the biological purpose of reproduction. At the nexus of Kantian aesthetics, literary analysis, and the history of medicine, Perverse Romanticism makes an important contribution to the study of sexuality in the long eighteenth century.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780801890413
(229mm x 152mm x 29mm)
Imprint: Johns Hopkins University Press
Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
Publish Date: 27-Jan-2009
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Richard C. Sha
Romanticism and the Emotions, Hardback (March 2014)» View all books by Richard C. Sha
The first essay collection to examine emotion across the span of Romantic literature and thought, in light of new scholarship.
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Author Biography - Richard C. Sha
Richard C. Sha is a professor of literature at American University and author of The Visual and Verbal Sketch in British Romanticism.
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