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1. Renascence: Volume > 74 > Issue: 3/4
James Nohrnberg

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2. Renascence: Volume > 74 > Issue: 3/4
Michael Vander Weele

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One does not read very far in the second and by far the longest section of Herbert’s The Temple before the single-minded exhortations of the speaker in “The Church Porch” and the early Lenten “complaints” of Christ to his people in “The Sacrifice” turn to the unpredictable elements of the speaker’s human condition: puzzlement, striving, grief, joy. The quick movement between these elements is due not only to Herbert’s poetic sensibility, I argue, but also to his anthropological understanding and his interest in early Christian precedent. I focus on remnants of Prudentius’ 5th-century Psychomachia in Herbert’s poetry and prose and suggest that they open a new vista onto Herbert’s performance of the unsteady dual state of the temple builder, whether poet or reader.
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3. Renascence: Volume > 74 > Issue: 3/4

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4. Renascence: Volume > 74 > Issue: 2
John Curran

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5. Renascence: Volume > 74 > Issue: 2
Ron Bieganowski, S. J.

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6. Renascence: Volume > 74 > Issue: 2
Joshua Avery

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This article argues that The Merchant of Venice’s dramatic action invites consideration of the philosophical questions of human agency and intelligibility. The play’s dialogue provokes the reader or auditor to consider what may obstruct or allow for both meaningful action in the world and a genuine understanding of that world. Since these issues were also a major sticking point in Catholic/Protestant controversies, the piece also argues that these issues can be analyzed in light of such theological tensions. One of the article’s main conclusions is that Shylock’s radically individualistic view of law and obligation explodes intelligibility, and by extension meaningful action as well. This destruction lays the groundwork for a world in which conflict can only be resolved via violence. In this sense, the play reveals what is at stake in the questions.
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7. Renascence: Volume > 74 > Issue: 2
Dana Greene

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The Anglican religious writer, Evelyn Underhill, (1875-1941) is best known as a scholar of mysticism and an advocate for the practical mysticism for ordinary people. What is less well-known is that in her own spiritual crisis she sought out the assistance of the Catholic, Baron Friedrich von Hugel. However, before she requested his counsel she was greatly influenced by her work on a biography of the thirteenth century Italian poet and mystic, Jacopone da Todi who wrote in the vernacular. This essay details how Jacopone and his predecessor Francis of Assisi, brought Underhill to her contemporary, von Hugel, who himself was influenced by the Franciscan tradition.
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8. Renascence: Volume > 74 > Issue: 2
Bernadette McNary-Zak

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This essay accounts for the rhetorical impact of Thomas Merton's inclusion - and later exclusion - of his 12C predecessor, Isaac de l'Etoile, in "In Silentio."
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9. Renascence: Volume > 74 > Issue: 2
Randy Boyagoda, Peter Spaulding

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An interview with the author of Dante’s Indiana, Randy Boyagoda, conducted by Peter Spaulding.
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10. Renascence: Volume > 74 > Issue: 2

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11. Renascence: Volume > 74 > Issue: 1
Kathryn E. Davis

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Dante’s Virgil is, according to Virgil, among the most hopeless souls in the Commedia. As he tells us himself, he and the other virtuous pagans in Limbo who lack baptism yet have not sinned live “sanza speme . . . in disio” (“without hope . . . in longing”). Virgil believes himself to be eternally damned, and he seems to have convinced everyone from Dante the pilgrim to Cato to Statius to almost all readers of Dante’s poem that he is right. This essay, however, will challenge the assumption that we must take Virgil’s hopeless self-assessment for granted as ultimate truth by exploring other possibilities which are opened up by Virgil’s disappearance in its immediate context. In Purgatorio 29, just before he makes his exit, Virgil stands face-to-face a scene of his own making remade on the banks of Lethe. When Virgil looks across this mystical river now flowing through Dante’s Eden, what does he see? And what might be the implications of his vision?
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12. Renascence: Volume > 74 > Issue: 1
Stephen Mead

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By his transformation and suggestive associations of the Christian and Pagan sources and influences in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Shakespeare both revivifies the social message of Paul’s epistle to the Corinthians for his own age and creates a transformative theatre that closely aligns the “magic” of theatrical performance with the spiritual tenets of Christian salvation and community.
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13. Renascence: Volume > 74 > Issue: 1
Terry W. Thompson

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Born the son of an Evangelical Anglican minister, Montague Rhodes James, "Monty" to family and friends, was arguably the best educated ghost story writer who ever lived: "He had all sorts of letters after his name." His tales, collected in four slim volumes, often touch upon, lightly for the most part, biblical motifs or themes. In his most celebrated horror tale, "Oh, Whistle, and I'll Come to You, My Lad," James alludes—subtly as was his wont—to the story of Thomas, the disciple who, "skeptical about the resurrection," demanded tangible proof of the event, an actual "touching," before he would deign to believe in the miraculous. In James's most famous effort in the supernatural genre, another doubting Thomas, in this case an arrogant disciple of modern science and its methods, demands the same proof, a "touching," before he will believe. And when that proof comes, it changes him forever just as it did "Thomas, one of the twelve."
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14. Renascence: Volume > 74 > Issue: 1

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15. Renascence: Volume > 73 > Issue: 4
Ed Block

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As Death Comes for the Archbishop approaches one hundred years of critical scrutiny, it still speaks to readers in much the same way it did in the 1920s. A critical response to early twentieth-century materialism and mendacity, the story of nineteenth-century New Mexico Archbishop Jean Marie Latour and his friend and Vicar, Fr. Joseph Vaillant affirms as it dramatizes friendship and renunciation while simultaneously celebrating the centrality of the transcendent self and the richness and value of lived personal experience.
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16. Renascence: Volume > 73 > Issue: 4
Elizabeth Theresa Howe

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The predominant imagery of progress in western mystical writing usually describes some form of ascent. The Subida del monte Carmelo by San Juan de la Cruz certainly suggests the notion in Spanish mystical writing. While San Juan proffers ascent (subida) in the title of the commentary on “En una noche oscura,” the poem proper does not present a sense of verticality at all but, rather, an essentially horizontal passage from the “casa sosegada” to (re)union with the Lover in a static apotheosis described in the final strophes. Similarly, a paradoxical presentation of movement appears in the Cántico espiritual. This article considers San Juan’s use of verbs of movement, especially within the Cántico espiritual, as metaphors for the underlying mystical message he ascribes to his poem. It also demonstrates the presence of the same extended metaphor in other poems of his, including “En una noche oscura” and the “Llama de amor viva.
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17. Renascence: Volume > 73 > Issue: 4
Bruce W. Young

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Though the word "atonement" does not appear in King Lear, the concept is present, along with related ones, like sin, justice, redemption, and sacrifice. Like other plays, Lear alludes to various atonement theories, setting them in dramatic conflict or cooperation and subjecting some to critique. Besides revealing the inadequacy of models based on payment or punishment, the play reinterprets the sacrificial theory of atonement by presenting sacrifice (especially that of Cordelia) as gracious and redemptive self-offering, not as a punishment or payment that satisfies anger or offended honor. Though the play’s religious references, including to Christ, are pervasive, ultimately atonement takes place at a human level, in the healing of relationships and inner maladies. Yet such atonement involves what may be called “ethical transcendence,” a transcendence consisting not in an ascent beyond the human condition, but rather in the offering of oneself in relationship and service to others.
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18. Renascence: Volume > 73 > Issue: 4
Samuel Hazo

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Pornography has been defined as sex separated from personality. In other words, life’s deepest need to express desire and affection and perpetuate the species is reduced to appetite and the satisfaction of appetite. War in many ways does the same. It depersonalizes killing by pitting stranger against stranger—uniformed or otherwise. Fatalities are reduced to numbers. Such killings are dignified by slogans (“Vietnamizing the Vietnamese” or “Operation Iraqi Freedom”),. Preparing troops for the killings in war is everything from oratory to close order drill, parades and honors. Denis de Rougemont in LOVE IIN THE WESTERN WORLD has even traced this to the legend of Tristan and Isolde in which Tristan chooses a military life to define his manhood after leaving Isolde. All of these manifestation and pretenses gloss over the brutality of war just as films, photographs and other promotions disguise pornography as mere excitement.
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19. Renascence: Volume > 73 > Issue: 4

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20. Renascence: Volume > 73 > Issue: 3
Brian Barbour

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An unremarked major theme in Gulliver's Travels is, Why does Gulliver lose his Christian faith? In Part III he is a devout Anglican who unlike Dutch Calvinists will not disrespect the crucifix, even at the cost of not being allowed to return home. In Part IV he dismisses the crucifix as a "post," a thing "indifferent." What has happened is made clear in Chap. VII where Gulliver's reveals his parodic or inverted conversion to the ruling principle of the Houyhnhnms, that "Reason alone is sufficient to govern a rational creature." For Swift that disastrous alone is a grave error, linking the earlier errors of the Reformation - sola gratia, sola fide, sola scriptura - with the coming darkness of the Enlightenment. Gulliver's loss of faith is predictive of the next phase of European intellectual life.
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