After Montaigne

Once you've enjoyed these new essays, or while you're enjoying them, we urge you to read the originals. You can start at Then we hope that you, too, will feel inspired to write essays after Montaigne.

Author: Michel Montaigne

Publisher: University of Georgia Press

ISBN: 9780820348179

Category: Literary Collections

Page: 272

View: 297


Writers of the modern essay can trace their chosen genre all the way back to Michel de Montaigne (1533-92). But save for the recent notable best seller How to Live: A Life of Montaigne by Sarah Bakewell, Montaigne is largely ignored. After Montaigne--a collection of twenty-four new personal essays intended as tribute-- aims to correct this collective lapse of memory and introduce modern readers and writers to their stylistic forebear. Though it's been over four hundred years since he began writing his essays, Montaigne's writing is still fresh, and his use of the form as a means of self-exploration in the world around him reads as innovative--even by modern standards. He is, simply put, the writer to whom all essayists are indebted. Each contributor has chosen one of Montaigne's 107 essays and has written his/her own essay of the same title and on the same theme, using a quote from Montaigne's essay as an epigraph. The overall effect is akin to a covers album, with each writer offering his or her own interpretation and stylistic verve to Montaigne's themes in ways that both reinforce and challenge the French writer's prose, ideas, and forms. Featuring a who's who of contemporary essayists, After Montaigne offers a startling engagement with Montaigne and the essay form while also pointing the way to the genre's potential new directions. Contributors: Marcia Aldrich, Chris Arthur, Robert Atwan, Barrie Jean Borich, Mary Cappello, Steven Church, Judith Ortiz Cofer, Danielle Cadena Deulen, Brian Doyle, Lina M. Ferreira C. V., Vivian Gornick, Robin Hemley, Wayne Koestenbaum, Shannon Lakanen, David Lazar, E. J. Levy, Phillip Lopate, Bret Lott, Patrick Madden, Desirae Matherly, Maggie Nelson, José Orduña, Elena Passarello, Lia Purpura, Kristen Radtke, Amy Lee Scott, Jerald Walker, Nicole Walker

Montaigne and Brief Narrative Form

7 Nakam notes three successive stages in Montaigne's attitude towards the religious civil wars: first, initial interest; next, after the Saint Barthélemy massacres, silence and indirect accusations; and finally a kind of transparent ...

Author: D. Losse

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 9781137320834

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 227

View: 395


The first book-length study to trace the origins of the essay to the conte, Montaigne and Brief Narrative Form puts the reader in touch with how unstable times and exceptional artistic insights transform one genre to create a new artistic form.

Montaigne s English Journey

After all, the temptation to conflate Essex with Bolingbroke, and thus the Queen with King Richard II, ... by John Florio as he worked steadily through the final years of the sixteenth century on his translation of Montaigne's Essais.

Author: William M. Hamlin

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 9780191507021

Category: Literary Collections

Page: 352

View: 448


Montaigne's English Journey examines the genesis, early readership, and multifaceted impact of John Florio's exuberant translation of Michel de Montaigne's Essays. Published in London in 1603, this book was widely read in seventeenth-century England: Shakespeare borrowed from it as he drafted King Lear and The Tempest, and many hundreds of English men and women first encountered Montaigne's tolerant outlook and disarming candour in its densely-printed pages. Literary historians have long been fascinated by the influence of Florio's translation, analysing its contributions to the development of the English essay and tracing its appropriation in the work of Webster, Dryden, and other major writers. William M. Hamlin, by contrast, undertakes an exploration of Florio's Montaigne within the overlapping realms of print and manuscript culture, assessing its importance from the varied perspectives of its earliest English readers. Drawing on letters, diaries, commonplace books, and thousands of marginal annotations inscribed in surviving copies of Florio's volume, Hamlin offers a comprehensive account of the transmission and reception of Montaigne in seventeenth-century England. In particular he focuses on topics that consistently intrigued Montaigne's English readers: sexuality, marriage, conscience, theatricality, scepticism, self-presentation, the nature of wisdom, and the power of custom. All in all, Hamlin's study constitutes a major contribution to investigations of literary readership in pre-Enlightenment Europe.

Montaigne s Politics

was thus failing in its essential task, which was “the preservation of all estates” of the kingdom.20 A year later, in 1584, Montaigne drafted a set of comments on a project of judicial reform, intended for Henry of Navarre.

Author: Biancamaria Fontana

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN: 9781400824519

Category: Philosophy

Page: 208

View: 741


Michel de Montaigne (1533-92) is principally known today as a literary figure--the inventor of the modern essay and the pioneer of autobiographical self-exploration who retired from politics in midlife to write his private, philosophical, and apolitical Essais. But, as Biancamaria Fontana argues in Montaigne's Politics, a novel, vivid account of the political meaning of the Essais in the context of Montaigne's life and times, his retirement from the Bordeaux parliament in 1570 "could be said to have marked the beginning, rather than the end, of his public career." He later served as mayor of Bordeaux and advisor to King Henry of Navarre, and, as Fontana argues, Montaigne's Essais very much reflect his ongoing involvement and preoccupation with contemporary politics--particularly the politics of France's civil wars between Catholics and Protestants. Fontana shows that the Essais, although written as a record of Montaigne's personal experiences, do nothing less than set forth the first major critique of France's ancien régime, anticipating the main themes of Enlightenment writers such as Voltaire and Diderot. Challenging the views that Montaigne was politically aloof or evasive, or that he was a conservative skeptic and supporter of absolute monarchy, Fontana explores many of the central political issues in Montaigne's work--the reform of legal institutions, the prospects of religious toleration, the role of public opinion, and the legitimacy of political regimes.

The Oxford Handbook of Montaigne

Montaigne was able to speak of La Boétie “more affectionately” after his death than during his life. ... I feel that it is not able to be expressed”), ten years later Montaigne, in the Bordeaux Copy, replaced his first response: “how to ...

Author: Philippe Desan

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 9780190679231

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 480

View: 817


In 1580, Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592) published a book unique by its title and its content: Essays"R. A literary genre was born. At first sight, the Essays resemble a patchwork of personal reflections, but they engage with questions that animate the human mind, and tend toward a single goal: to live better in the present and to prepare for death. For this reason, Montaigne's thought and writings have been a subject of enduring interest across disciplines. This Handbook brings together essays by prominent scholars that examine Montaigne's literary, philosophical, and political contributions, and assess his legacy and relevance today in a global perspective. The chapters of this Handbook offer a sweeping study of Montaigne across different disciplines and in a global perspective. One section covers the historical Montaigne, situating his thought in his own time and space, notably the Wars of Religion in France. The political, historical and religious context of Montaigne's Essays requires a rigorous presentation to inform the modern reader of the issues and problems that confronted Montaigne and his contemporaries in his own time. In addition to this contextual approach to Montaigne, the Handbook also establishes a connection between Montaigne's writings and issues and problems directly relevant to our modern times, that is to say, our age of global ideology. Montaigne's considerations, or essays, offer a point of departure for the modern reader's own assessments. The Essays analyze what can be broadly defined as human nature, the endless process by which the individual tries to impose opinions upon others through the production of laws, policies or philosophies. Montaigne's motto -- "What do I know?" -- is a simple question yet one of perennial significance. One could argue that reading Montaigne today teaches us that the angle defines the world we see, or, as Montaigne wrote: "What matters is not merely that we see the thing, but how we see it."

Montaigne s Unruly Brood

Earlier the essayist had entrusted his portrait to La Boétie , to the friend who alone had enjoyed his true image , and the friend had carried it off in his death . Now after Montaigne himself has been " carried off ” Marie de Gournay ...

Author: Richard L. Regosin

Publisher: University of California Press

ISBN: 9780520360372

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 266

View: 703


Perhaps as old as writing itself, the metaphor of the book as child has depicted textuality as an only son conceived to represent its father uniformly and to assure the integrity of his name. Richard L. Regosin demonstrates how Montaigne's Essais both departs from and challenges this conventional figure of textuality. He argues that Montaigne's writing is best described as a corpus of siblings with multiple faces and competing voices, a hybrid textuality inclined both to truth and dissimulation, to faithfulness and betrayal, to form and deformation. And he analyzes how this unruly, mixed brood also discloses a sexuality and gender dynamic in the Essais that is more conflicted than the traditional metaphor of literary paternity allows. Regosin challenges traditional critics by showing how the "logic" of a faithful filial text is disrupted and how the writing self displaces the author's desire for mastery and totalization. He approaches the Essais from diverse critical and theoretical perspectives that provide new ground for understanding both Montaigne's complex textuality and the obtrusive reading that it simultaneously invites and resists. His analysis is informed by poststructuralist criticism, by reception theory, and by gender and feminist studies, yet at the same time he treats the Essais as a child of sixteenth-century Humanism and late Renaissance France. Regosin also examines Montaigne's self-proclaimed taste for Ovid and the role played by the seminal texts of self-representation and aesthetic conception (Narcissus and Pygmalion) and the myth of sexual metamorphosis (Iphis). This title is part of UC Press's Voices Revived program, which commemorates University of California Press’s mission to seek out and cultivate the brightest minds and give them voice, reach, and impact. Drawing on a backlist dating to 1893, Voices Revived makes high-quality, peer-reviewed scholarship accessible once again using print-on-demand technology. This title was originally published in 1966.

The History of Scepticism

The impact of Montaigne's Pyrrhonism occurred both directly, through the influence of the Essais, which were very widely read and reprinted in the years immediately after their initial publication,63 and also through the more didactic ...

Author: Richard H. Popkin

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0195355393

Category: Philosophy

Page: 440

View: 182


This is a thoroughly revised and expanded edition of Richard Popkin's classic The History of Scepticism, first published in 1960, revised in 1979, and since translated into numerous foreign languages. This authoritative work of historical scholarship has been revised throughout, including new material on: the introduction of ancient skepticism into Renaissance Europe; the role of Savonarola and his disciples in bringing Sextus Empiricus to the attention of European thinkers; and new material on Henry More, Blaise Pascal, Thomas Hobbes, Baruch Spinoza, Nicolas Malebranche, G.W. Leibniz, Simon Foucher and Pierre-Daniel Huet, and Pierre Bayle. The bibliography has also been updated.

Spartan Kings and Statesmen in Montaigne s Essais

... following Montaigne's example,23 we could cite Agesilaus' famous saying: “How hard it is to love and still be wise ... 25 This denouement allowed Stegmann26 to discuss the decline of the hero in Corneille's plays after 1659 in terms ...


Publisher: Méduse d'Or S.A.R.L.

ISBN: 9782900409008

Category: Philosophy

Page: 112

View: 428


In his Essais, Michel Eyquem de Montaigne (1533-1592), father of modern scepticism and fervent supporter of the ‘philosophy of praxis’, seems to be the first modern thinker in the footsteps of Plato to recognize the existence of Spartan philosopher-kings and philosopher-statesmen. But Montaigne goes further: he sees Sparta as a city-state of philosopher-citizens, and he distinguishes between the Spartans’ philosophical virtue and their military valour: true courage is the work of prudence – a moral and an intellectual virtue -, and of wisdom, which is recognized and proved by its ‘practice’ through living examples, experiences in everyday religious, moral, social, and civic life, rational justification and moral standing of interlinked choices on virtue and evil, happiness and sadness, joy and pain, life and death. There is a dialectical relationship between theory and praxis, words and deeds, arts and arms. The same dialectical approach is taken by Montaigne whose ‘valiant philosophy’ has a particular purpose: to teach not to fear death. In these circumstances self-knowledge (or wisdom) takes the double significance of an intellectual investigation, and at the same time a training that brings victory not over enemies in the battlefield but over time and death.

Montaigne s Essais

Early on , the subject of Montaigne's reflections became himself and his relation to the world . Although the style and length of essays changed over time ( the later ones long and more outspoken ) , how much Montaigne's substantive ...

Author: Wendell John Coats

Publisher: Peter Lang

ISBN: 0820463167

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 125

View: 838


This book provides an extensive and textual analysis of Montaigne's essays - both the relevant Villey French texts as well as the Frame English translations. It identifies and illustrates a unifying, recurring theme in the ostensibly diverse and often apparently contradictory essays of the sixteenth-century writer - the attempt at psychic harmony through «temporal solipsism», or living insofar as possible in the present moment by doing things for their own sake rather than for extrinsic purposes. Placing Montaigne in historical context, Montaigne's Essais argues that he implicitly provides his own synthesis of pagan and Christian ideas, with no fewer tensions than the Aquinian synthesis. A concluding bibliographic essay addresses some issues of scholarly controversy, primarily from the perspectives of philosophy and political theory.

Nonfictional Romantic Prose

After Montaigne , the essay went off in one prominent direction and several sketchier ones , primarily toward English development of the form . Partly under Bacon's influence , partly through Florio's translations of Montaigne ...

Author: Steven P. Sondrup

Publisher: John Benjamins Publishing

ISBN: 9027234515

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 500

View: 607


Nonfictional Romantic Prose: Expanding Borders surveys a broad range of expository, polemical, and analytical literary forms that came into prominence during the last two decades of the eighteenth century and the first half of the nineteenth. They stand in contrast to better-known romantic fiction in that they endeavor to address the world of daily, empirical experience rather than that of more explicitly self-referential, fanciful creation. Among them are genres that have since the nineteenth century come to characterize many aspects of modern life like the periodical or the psychological case study; others flourished and enjoyed wide-spread popularity during the nineteenth century but are much less well-known today like the almanac and the diary. Travel narratives, pamphlets, religious and theological texts, familiar essays, autobiographies, literary-critical and philosophical studies, and discussions of the visual arts and music all had deep historical roots when appropriated by romantic writers but prospered in their hands and assumed distinctive contours indicative of the breadth of romantic thought. SPECIAL OFFER: 30% discount for a complete set order (5 vols.).The Romanticism series in the Comparative History of Literatures in European Languages is the result of a remarkable international collaboration. The editorial team coordinated the efforts of over 100 experts from more than two dozen countries to produce five independently conceived, yet interrelated volumes that show not only how Romanticism developed and spread in its principal European homelands and throughout the New World, but also the ways in which the affected literatures in reaction to Romanticism have redefined themselves on into Modernism. A glance at the index of each volume quickly reveals the extraordinary richness of the series' total contents. Romantic Irony sets the broader experimental parameters of comparison by concentrating on the myriad expressions of “irony” as one of the major impulses in the Romantic philosophical and artistic revolution, and by combining cross-cultural and interdisciplinary studies with special attention also to literatures in less widely diffused language streams. Romantic Drama traces creative innovations that deeply altered the understanding of genre at large, fed popular imagination through vehicles like the opera, and laid the foundations for a modernist theater of the absurd. Romantic Poetry demonstrates deep patterns and a sharing of crucial themes of the revolutionary age which underlie the lyrical expression that flourished in so many languages and environments. Nonfictional Romantic Prose assists us in coping with the vast array of writings from the personal and intimate sphere to modes of public discourse, including Romanticism's own self-commentary in theoretical statements on the arts, society, life, the sciences, and more. Nor are the discursive dimensions of imaginative literature neglected in the closing volume, Romantic Prose Fiction, where the basic Romantic themes and story types (the romance, novel, novella, short story, and other narrative forms) are considered throughout Europe and the New World. This enormous realm is seen not just in terms of Romantic theorizing, but in the light of the impact of Romantic ideas and narration on later generations. As an aid to readers, the introduction to Romantic Prose Fiction explains the relationships among the volumes in the series and carries a listing of their tables of contents in an appendix. No other series exists comparable to these volumes which treat the entirety of Romanticism as a cultural happening across the whole breadth of the “Old” and “New” Worlds and thus render a complex picture of European spiritual strivings in the late eighteenth and the nineteenth centuries, a heritage still very close to our age.