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Transfiguration: The Religion of Art in Nineteenth-Century Literature Before Aestheticism

Stephen Cheeke


This book focuses upon the ways in which four major writers about art in the nineteenth century (John Ruskin, Robert Browning, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, and Walter Pater) engaged with the Christian content of their subject, and, in Pater’s case, how Christianity was placed in dialogue with the virtues of classical sculpture. The study will return to two related phenomena: the sin or error of idolatry (a false substitution, a sexual betrayal), and the poetics of transfiguration (to elevate or glorify subject matter not thought of as conventionally poetic, to praise). Central to the book is the qu ... More

Keywords: literature, art, religion, aesthetics, idolatry, transfiguration, Ruskin, Rossetti, Browning, Pater

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2016 Print ISBN-13: 9780198757207
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2016 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198757207.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Stephen Cheeke, author
University of Bristol