Essay Collection Book Proposal: Disgust in Early Modern English Literature (abstracts due June 30, 2012)

full name / name of organization: 
Natalie Eschenbaum / University of Wisconsin - La Crosse
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Ashgate Press has expressed sincere interest in publishing this edited collection of essays on disgust in early modern English literature. The book will examine how and why early modern English individuals experienced repulsion, and how and why they expressed this repulsion in poetry, plays, and prose. The study of disgust in early modern literature is essential and overdue, and dovetails nicely with important work currently being done on the five bodily senses. As other disciplines (e.g. anthropology, psychology, history, philosophy) have discovered, to be disgusted is to be human, and to be disgusted in certain ways, by certain things, is to identify with a particular culture. By studying the ways in which disgust manifests itself in early modern literature, we will better understand early modern culture. Also, it makes sense for literature to be examined through a lens of disgust because literature, traditionally, has been a sign of civilized and "tasteful" culture. What happens, then, when authors aim to disgust, rather than to delight? Especially during the period of literature when it is thought the idea of "aesthetic taste" came into existence? We are seeking chapter-length essays that take disgust in early modern English literature seriously, and consider its purpose and effect. Please send 200-word (maximum) abstracts and 1-page CVs by June 30, 2012, to Natalie Eschenbaum at Accepted essays likely will be due early in 2013. They will need to be 6000-8000 words in length (including notes and bibliography) and adhere to MLA style.