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Author Cole, Lucinda.

Title Imperfect creatures : vermin, literature, and the sciences of life, 1600-1740 / Lucinda Cole.

Publication Info. Ann Arbor : University of Michigan Press, [2016]


Location Call No. OPAC Message Status
 Axe JSTOR Open Ebooks  Electronic Book    ---  Available
Description 1 online resource (240 pages)
text txt rdacontent
computer c rdamedia
online resource cr rdacarrier
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Summary "Lucinda Cole's Imperfect Creatures offers the first full-length study of the shifting, unstable, but foundational status of "vermin" as creatures and category in the early modern literary, scientific, and political imagination. In the space between theology and an emergent empiricism, Cole's argument engages a wide historical swath of canonical early modern literary texts--William Shakespeare's Macbeth, Christopher Marlowe's The Jew of Malta, Abraham Cowley's The Plagues of Egypt, Thomas Shadwell's The Virtuoso, Rochester's "A Ramble in St. James's Park," and Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe and Journal of the Plague Year--alongside other nonliterary primary sources and under-examined archival materials from the period, including treatises on animal trials, grain shortages, rabies, and comparative neuroanatomy. As Cole illustrates, human health and demographic problems--notably those of feeding populations periodically stricken by hunger, disease, and famine--were tied to larger questions about food supplies, property laws, national identity, and the theological imperatives that underwrote humankind's claim to dominion over the animal kingdom. In this context, Cole's study indicates, so-called "vermin" occupied liminal spaces between subject and object, nature and animal, animal and the devil, the devil and disease--even reason and madness. This verminous discourse formed a foundational category used to carve out humankind's relationship to an unpredictable, a-rational natural world, but it evolved into a form for thinking about not merely animals but anything that threatened the health of the body politic--humans, animals, and even thoughts."-- Provided by publisher
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (pages 211-232) and index.
Contents Introduction: Reading beneath the Grain -- Rats, Witches, Miasma, and Early Modern Theories of Contagion -- Swarming Things: Dearth and the Plagues of Egypt in Wither and Cowley -- "Observe the Frog": Imperfect Creatures, Neuroanatomy, and the Problem of the Human -- Libertine Biopolitics: Dogs, Bitches, and Parasites in Shadwell, Rochester, and Gay -- What Happened to the Rats? Hoarding, Hunger, and Storage on Crusoe's Island -- Afterword: We Have Never Been Perfect.
Note Print version record.
Language English.
Access Open Access EbpS
Subject English literature -- 17th century -- History and criticism.
English literature -- 18th century -- History and criticism.
Pests in literature.
Human-animal relationships in literature.
Human-animal relationships.
Animals as carriers of disease.
Literature and science -- England -- History -- 17th century.
Littérature anglaise -- 17e siècle -- Histoire et critique.
Littérature anglaise -- 18e siècle -- Histoire et critique.
Animaux et plantes nuisibles dans la littérature.
Relations homme-animal dans la littérature.
Relations homme-animal.
Animaux (Vecteurs de maladies)
Littérature et sciences -- Angleterre -- Histoire -- 17e siècle.
NATURE -- Animals -- General.
Human-animal relationships in literature. (OCoLC)fst00963492
Human-animal relationships. (OCoLC)fst00963482
English literature. (OCoLC)fst00911989
Animals as carriers of disease. (OCoLC)fst00809570
Literature and science. (OCoLC)fst01000093
Pests in literature. (OCoLC)fst01938665
Science in literature. (OCoLC)fst01108731
England. (OCoLC)fst01219920
Chronological Term 1600-1799
Genre/Form Criticism, interpretation, etc. (OCoLC)fst01411635
History. (OCoLC)fst01411628
Other Form: Print version: Imperfect creatures. Ann Arbor : University of Michigan Press, [2016] 9780472072958 (DLC) 2015041734
ISBN 9780472121557 (e-book)
9780472900633 (electronic bk.)
0472900633 (electronic bk.)
9780472052950 (cloth ; alk. paper)
9780472072958 (hardback ; acid-free paper)
0472072951 (hardback ; acid-free paper)
0472052950 (cloth ; alk. paper)
Standard No. 10.3998/mpub.4424519
AU@ 000057355581
AU@ 000068187794
GBVCP 1008666130
GBVCP 1030560854

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