Milton and the Early Modern Culture of Devotion: Bodies at Prayer, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Milton and the Early Modern Culture of Devotion

Bodies at Prayer, 1st Edition

By Naya Tsentourou


176 pages

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Hardback: 9781138710276
pub: 2017-09-15
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Miton and Early Modern Devotional Culture analyses the representation of public and private prayer in John Milton’s poetry and prose, paying particular attention to the ways seventeenth-century prayer is imagined as embodied in sounds, gestures, postures, and emotional responses. Naya Tsentourou demonstrates Milton’s profound engagement with prayer, and how this is driven by a consistent and ardent effort to experience one’s address to God as inclusive of body and spirit and as loaded with affective potential. The book aims to become the first interdisciplinary study to show how Milton participates in and challenges early modern debates about authentic and insincere worship in public, set and spontaneous prayers in private, and gesture and voice in devotion.

Table of Contents


Chapter 1: Dressing the devotional body

Chapter 2: ‘Stale and empty words’: Consuming prayers in Eikonoklastes

Chapter 3: Hymns, sighs, and the physicality of prayer in Paradise Lost

Chapter 4: Iconoclastic prayer in Samson Agonistes


About the Author

Naya Tsentourou is currently Lecturer in English at the University of Exeter, Penryn. She has research interests in Milton and religious lyric, as well as Shakespeare and the history of emotions. She has co-edited the collection Forms of Hypocrisy in Early Modern England (forthcoming with Routledge) with Lucia Nigri.

About the Series

Routledge Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Literature

This series is our home for cutting-edge, upper-level scholarly studies and edited collections. Taking an interdisciplinary approach to literary studies, it engages with topics such as philosophy, science, race, gender, film, music, and ecology. Titles are characterized by dynamic interventions into established subjects and innovative studies on emerging topics.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LITERARY CRITICISM / Modern / 17th Century
LITERARY CRITICISM / Subjects & Themes / Religion
RELIGION / General