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Look Inside Godly Reading

Godly Reading
Print, Manuscript and Puritanism in England, 1580–1720

$34.99 (C)

Part of Cambridge Studies in Early Modern British History

  • Date Published: January 2014
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781107692244

$ 34.99 (C)

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About the Authors
  • This innovative study explores the history of Puritanism and the history of reading in the long seventeenth century. Drawing on a wide range of significant but understudied source materials, it seeks to advance our understanding of Puritan or 'godly' culture by examining the place of reading within that culture between c.1580 and 1720. In contrast to long-standing claims about the connections between advanced Protestantism and emergent individualism and interiority, the book demonstrates the importance of communal and public forms of reading in the practice of godly piety. Andrew Cambers employs a novel framework, based around the spaces and places of early modern reading, to offer a revised understanding of the nature of Puritanism and of the practice and representation of reading during the period. Moving beyond existing interpretations, Godly Reading opens up fresh discussions and debates about the nature of early modern reading and religion.

    • Provides a novel interpretation of Puritan culture
    • Reconnects post-Restoration nonconformity with its early Stuart past
    • Of interest to scholars and students of seventeenth-century British history, literature and culture
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "Andrew Cambers's Godly Reading: Print, Manuscript and Puritanism in England, 1580–1720 is more interested in the psychological than the political aspects of Puritanism, but it also challenges some tenacious popular assumptions."- David Hawkes, Times Literary Supplement

    "Andrew Cambers’s scholarly study of English Puritan reading is very welcome. And it is a relief to find it a practical, down-to-earth account…The depth and breadth of Cambers’s research … really pays off: he knows an impressive range of materials dauntingly well… This book shows us how Puritans read, and it does so in an erudite and fascinating way." -Alec Ryrie, Church Times

    ‘A stunningly original study of the intersections between the reading and using of books and religious practice among Puritans…a striking work that deepens our understanding of early modern England’s religious culture’ R. C. Richardson, Times Higher Education

    "a vivid account of this neglected side of puritanism." -Kate Narveson, Journal of British Studies

    "Andrew Cambers’s compelling study of how and what puritans read is strikingly structured around where they read, explicitly drawing on the recent ‘‘spatial turn’’ (33)." -David Parry, Renaissance Quarterly

    "...this is a fine work, raising interesting questions, providing answers from a wealth of sources, and managing to bring various fields into conversation with an adroitness verging on the elegant." -Tom Webster, The Journal of Modern History

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    Product details

    • Date Published: January 2014
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781107692244
    • length: 320 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 17 mm
    • weight: 0.43kg
    • contains: 14 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Reading and Puritanism in the long seventeenth century
    2. Domestic spaces and private reading
    3. Reading the family
    4. Reading the library
    5. Reading in the parish and the town
    6. Reading in prison
    7. Conclusion

  • Author

    Andrew Cambers, Lancaster University
    Andrew Cambers has taught at the Universities of Oxford, Exeter and Lancaster and is editor of The Life of John Rastrick, 1650–1727 (2010).

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