Science, Form, and the Problem of Induction in British Romanticism

Science, Form, and the Problem of Induction in British Romanticism
Dahlia Porter
NZ$ 49.95
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NZ$ 44.95
Not defined - 316pg
25 Jun 2020 UK
International import eta 7-19 days
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Exploring a topic at the intersection of science, philosophy and literature in the late eighteenth century Dahlia Porter traces the history of induction as a writerly practice - as a procedure for manipulating textual evidence by selective quotation - from its roots in Francis Bacon's experimental philosophy to its pervasiveness across Enlightenment moral philosophy, aesthetics, literary criticism, and literature itself. Porter brings this history to bear on an omnipresent feature of Romantic-era literature, its mixtures of verse and prose. Combining analyses of printed books and manuscripts with recent scholarship in the history of science, she elucidates the compositional practices and formal dilemmas of Erasmus Darwin, Robert Southey, Charlotte Smith, Maria Edgeworth, and Samuel Taylor Coleridge. In doing so she re-examines the relationship between Romantic literature and eighteenth-century empiricist science, philosophy, and forms of art and explores how Romantic writers engaged with the ideas of Enlightenment empiricism in their work.

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Dahlia Porter is Lecturer in English Literature and Material Culture at the University of Glasgow. Her articles on literature, science, medicine, and visual art appear in Representations, Romanticism, and The Eighteenth-Century: Theory and Interpretation and in essay collections on Samuel Johnson, Charlotte Smith, and The Afterlives of Eighteenth-Century Fiction. She co-edited Wordsworth and Coleridge's Lyrical Ballads, 1798 and 1800 (2008) with Michael Gamer, and is a member of the Multigraph Collective, a group of 22 scholars who co-wrote Interacting with Print: Elements of Reading in the Era of Print Saturation (2018).

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