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To Embody the Marvelous: The Making of Illusions in Early Modern Spain
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To Embody the Marvelous: The Making of Illusions in Early Modern Spain (Hardback)

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In its exploration of puppetry and animation as the performative media of choice for mastering the art of illusion, To Embody the Marvelous engages with early modern notions of wonder in religious, artistic, and social contexts.

From jointed, wood-carved figures of Christ, saintly marionettes that performed hagiographical dramas, experimental puppets and automata in Cervantes' Don Quixote, and the mechanical sets around which playwright CalderOn de la Barca devised secular magic shows to deconstruct superstitions, these historical and fictional artifacts reenvisioned religious, artistic, and social notions that led early modern society to critically wrestle with enchantment and disenchantment.

The use of animated performance objects in Spanish theatrical contexts during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries became one of the most effective pedagogical means to engage with civil society. Regardless of social strata, readers and spectators alike were caught up in a paradigm shift wherein belief systems were increasingly governed by reason-even though the discursive primacy of supernatural doxa and Christian wonder remained firmly entrenched. Thanks to their potential for motion, religious and profane puppets, automata, and mechanical stage props deployed a rationalized sense of wonder that illustrates the relationship between faith and reason, reevaluates the boundaries of fiction in art and entertainment cultures, acknowledges the rise of science and technology, and questions normative authority.

Film, TV & DramaFilms, cinemaAnimated filmsFilm, TV & DramaPerforming Arts except MusicPuppetry, miniature & toy theatreHistory & PoliticsRegional & national historyEuropean historyPhilosophy, Psychology & Social SciencesReligion & BeliefsReligion: generalHistory of religion Publisher: Vanderbilt University Press Publication Date: 30/07/2021 ISBN-13: 9780826501806  Details: Type: Hardback Format: Books
Availability: Pre-order for despatch on publication. Pre-Order

Esther FernAndez is an associate professor in the department of modern and classical literatures and cultures at Rice University.

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