New Book | The Eighteenth Centuries: Global Networks of Enlightenment

Posted in books by Editor on March 22, 2018

The essays in this collection, which includes a contribution by Mary Sheriff, are accompanied by “The Digital Eighteenth Centuries,” a digital atlas created on the MapScholar platform, available here. From the University of Virginia Press:

David Gies and Cynthia Wall, eds., The Eighteenth Centuries: Global Networks of Enlightenment (Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2018), 316 pages, ISBN 978 0813940755, $40.

Today, when ‘globalization’ is a buzzword invoked in nearly every realm, we turn back to the eighteenth century and witness the inherent globalization of its desires and, at times, its accomplishments. During the chronological eighteenth century, learning and knowledge were intimately connected across disciplinary and geographical boundaries, yet the connections themselves are largely unstudied. In The Eighteenth Centuries, twenty-two scholars across disciplines address the idea of plural Enlightenments and a global eighteenth century, transcending the demarcations that long limited our grasp of the period’s breadth and depth.

Engaging concepts that span divisions of chronology and continent, these essays address topics ranging from mechanist biology, painted geographies, and revolutionary opera to Americanization, theatrical subversion of marriage, and plantation architecture. Weaving together many disparate threads of the historical tapestry we call the Enlightenment, this volume illuminates our understanding of the interconnectedness of the eighteenth centuries.

David T. Gies, Commonwealth Professor of Spanish at the University of Virginia, is the author of The Theatre in Nineteenth-Century Spain and editor of The Cambridge History of Spanish Literature. Cynthia Wall, Professor of English at the University of Virginia, is the author of The Prose of Things: Transformations of Description in the Eighteenth Century and The Literary and Cultural Spaces of Restoration London.



Part I | Knowledge and the Lives of Books
• Sophia Rosenfeld, Introduction
• Brad Pasanek and Chad Wellmon, Enlightenment, Some Assembly Required
• Michael Pickard, An Inventory of the Estate of William Straham in 1759
• Patricia Meyer Spacks, Understanding and Obscure Text: The Fortunate Foundlings and the Limits of Interdisciplinarity

Part II | Human Economies
• Andrew O’Shaughnessy, Introduction
• Ruth Hill, How Long Does Blood Last? Degeneration as Blanqueamiento in the Americas
• Carrie B. Douglass, Thomas Jefferson: Breeding and Buying Horses, Connecting Family, Friends, and Neighbors
• Louis P. Nelson, The Jamaican Plantation: Industrial, Global, Contested

Part III | Artists’ Geographies
• Richard Will, Introduction
• Mary D. Sheriff, Emotional Geographies: Watteau and the Fate of Women
• Katelyn D. Crawford, Painting New England in the Dutch West Indies: John Greenwood’s Sea Captains Carousing in Surinam

Part IV | Dramatic Politics
• Bonnie Gordon, Introduction
• Pierpaolo Polzonetti, Mozart and the American Revolution
• Adrienne Ward, The Drama of Marriage in Eighteenth-Century Venice: Carlo Goldoni’s La locandiera
• Jennifer Reed, Performances of Suffering and the Stagecraft of Symathy
• Casey R. Eriksen, The Aesthetics of Excess: Rococo Vestiges of Tartuffe in Isla’s Father Gerundio

• James P. Ambuske and Carol Guarnieri, About MapScholar

Notes on Contributors

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