Catalogue


Realism, ethics and secularism [electronic resource] : essays on Victorian literature and science /
George Levine.
imprint
Cambridge, UK ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 2008.
description
ix, 283 p. ; 24 cm.
ISBN
0521885264 (hardback), 9780521885263 (hardback)
format(s)
Book
More Details
imprint
Cambridge, UK ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 2008.
isbn
0521885264 (hardback)
9780521885263 (hardback)
restrictions
Licensed for access by U. of T. users.
contents note
Part I : the subject broached : otherness, epistemology, and ethics -- George Eliot's hypothesis of reality -- Part II : ethics without God, or, can "is" can become "ought"? -- Is life worth living? -- Ruskin and Darwin and the matter of matter -- Scientific discourse as an alternative to faith -- In defense of Positivism -- Why science isn't literature : the importance of differences -- Part III : literature, secularity, and the quest for otherness -- Realism -- Dickens, secularism, and agency -- The heartbeat of the squirrel -- Real toads in imaginary gardens, or vice versa.
general note
Includes index.
catalogue key
8371655
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2009-07-01:
For serious students of Victorian literature, distinguished scholar George Levine (emer., Rutgers Univ.) needs little in the way of introduction. The author of numerous books on Victorian literature, Levine has long been interested in the intersections between Victorian literature and science--as evidenced by his Darwin and the Novelists (1988) and Darwin Loves You (2006), among other titles. Comprising freestanding essays, some published previously, the present volume once again concentrates on Victorian literature and science and focuses loosely on the three subjects mentioned in the title. Because these essays were written over many years, and because they cover a wide range of material, only the most advanced students will be able to extract a unifying argument that unites the volume as a whole. However, Levine's individual essays succeed admirably. Highlights include "In Defense of Positivism," which attempts a contemporary recuperation of that 19th-century philosophy, and "How Science Isn't Literature: The Importance of Differences," a theoretical essay that explores many of the underpinnings of Levine's broader argument. Although Levine's minimalist notes are refreshing, the lack of bibliography is disappointing. Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty. R. D. Morrison Morehead State University
Reviews
Review Quotes
Review of the hardback: 'In Realism, Ethics and Secularism, George Levine reaffirms once again his position as one of the most thoughtful and relevant critics working on literature and science over the last thirty years ... Levine moves effortlessly among the full range of Victorian fiction and non-fiction, even as he responds, always courteously and judiciously, to the arguments of contemporary literary critics, philosophers, scientists and historians ... It is hard to imagine a better introduction to scholarship in literature and science today and to its wider significance ... a major contribution to our understanding of Victorian culture and realist fiction ... it is a model of literary criticism itself. On all of these grounds, it deserves to be read widely and deeply.' John Holmes, University of Reading
"In Realism, Ethics and Secularism, George Levine reaffirms once again his position as one of the most thoughtful and relevant critics working on literature and science over the last thirty years...Levine moves effortlessly among the full range of Victorian fiction and non-fiction, even as he responds, always courteously and judiciously, to the arguments of contemporary literary critics, philosophers, scientists and historians...It is hard to imagine a better introduction to scholarship in literature and science today and to its wider significance...a major contribution to our understanding of Victorian culture and realist fiction...it is a model of literary criticism itself. On all of these grounds, it deserves to be read widely and deeply." -John Holmes, University of Reading
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, July 2009
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Bowker Data Service Summary
This collection of essays extends and develops the key themes of George Levine's work: the intersection of 19th-century British literature, culture and science and the relation of knowledge and truth to ethics. They offer different perspectives on George Eliot, Thackeray, the Positivists, and much more.
Description for Bookstore
George Levine is one of the world's leading scholars of Victorian literature and culture. This 2008 collection of his essays extends and develops the key themes of his life's work: the intersection of nineteenth-century British literature, culture and science and the relation of knowledge and truth to ethics.
Description for Bookstore
George Levine is one of the world's leading scholars of Victorian literature and culture. This collection of his essays extends and develops the key themes of his life's work: the intersection of nineteenth-century British literature, culture and science and the relation of knowledge and truth to ethics.
Main Description
George Levine is one of the world's leading scholars of Victorian literature and culture. This 2008 collection of his essays develops the key themes of his work: the intersection of nineteenth-century British literature, culture and science and the relation of knowledge and truth to ethics. The essays offer perspectives on George Eliot, Thackeray, the Positivists, and the Scientific Naturalists, and reassess the complex relationship between Ruskin and Darwin. In readings of Lawrence and Coetzee, Levine addresses Victorian and modern efforts to push beyond the limits of realist art by testing its aesthetic and epistemological limits in engagement with the self and the other. Some of Levine's most important contributions to the field are reprinted, in revised and updated form, alongside previously unpublished material. Together, these essays cohere into an exploration both of Victorian literature and culture and of ethical, epistemological, and aesthetic problems fundamental to our own times.
Main Description
George Levine is one of the world's leading scholars of Victorian literature and culture. This collection of his essays extends and develops the key themes of his work: the intersection of nineteenth-century British literature, culture and science and the relation of knowledge and truth to ethics. The essays offer new perspectives on George Eliot, Thackeray, the Positivists, and the Scientific Naturalists, and reassess the complex relationship between Ruskin and Darwin. In readings of Lawrence and Coetzee, Levine addresses Victorian and modern efforts to push beyond the limits of realist art by testing its aesthetic and epistemological limits in engagement with the self and the other. Some of Levine's most important contributions to the field are reprinted, in revised and updated form, alongside previously unpublished material. Together, these essays cohere into an exploration both of Victorian literature and culture and of ethical, epistemological, and aesthetic problems fundamental to our own times.
Table of Contents
Prefacep. vi
Introductionp. 1
The Subject Broached: Otherness, Epistemology, and Ethics
George Eliot's hypothesis of realityp. 25
Ethics without God, or, Can "is" Become "Ought"?
Is life worth living?p. 53
Ruskin and Darwin and the matter of matterp. 75
Scientific discourse as an alternative to faithp. 100
In defense of Positivismp. 136
Why science isn't literature: the importance of differencesp. 165
Literature, Secularity, and the Quest for Otherness
Realismp. 185
Dickens, secularism, and agencyp. 210
The heartbeat of the squirrelp. 245
Real toads in imaginary gardens, or vice versap. 261
Epiloguep. 270
Indexp. 275
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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