This book analyses the evolution of literary and artistic representations of the soul, exploring its development through different time periods.
The volume combines literary, aesthetic, ethical, and political considerations of the soul in texts and works of art from the seventeenth to the twenty-first centuries, spanning cultures and schools of thought. Drawing on philosophical, religious and psychological theories of the soul, it emphasizes the far-reaching and enduring epistemological function of the concept in literature, art and politics.
The authors argue that the concept of the soul has shaped the understanding of human life and persistently irrigated cultural productions. They show how the concept of soul was explored and redefined by writers and artists, remaining relevant even as it became removed from its ancient or Christian origins.
Estelle Murail is a Senior Lecturer in English Literature and Culture at the Catholic University of Paris and Associate Researcher and Lecturer at the University of Paris, France. She has published several articles on the flâneur and cities, and co-edited Dickens and the Virtual City (Palgrave, 2017). Her current research focuses on urban spaces, the environment, crossings and networks, and the notion of persistence.
Delphine Louis-Dimitrov is a Senior Lecturer in American Literature and Vice-Dean of the Faculty of Humanities at the Catholic University of Paris, France. Her research mostly focuses on the interplay of individuality with history and politics in fiction and autobiographical writings. Spirituality is central to her reflection on literary representations of individual and collective identities.