Hogarth's Harlot: Sacred Parody in Enlightenment England

Front Cover
JHU Press, Dec 3, 2003 - Art - 418 pages

In 1732, a blasphemous burlesque of the Christian Atonement was published in England without comment from the government or the Church of England. In Hogarth's Harlot, Ronald Paulson explains this absence of official censure through a detailed examination of the parameters of blasphemy in eighteenth-century England and the changing attitudes toward the central tenets of the Christian Church among artists in this period. Discerning a profound spiritual and cultural shift from atonement and personal salvation to redemption, incarnation, and acts of charity and love, Paulson focuses on such influential factors as English antipopery and anti-Jacobitism, as well as the ideas of the English Enlightenment.

Offering imaginative and deeply informed readings of a wide range of artistic works—engravings by Hogarth; poems by Milton, Pope, Christopher Smart, and Blake; plays by Nicholas Rowe and George Lillo; paintings and sculptures by Benjamin West, John Zoffany, Joseph Wright of Derby, and Louis-François Roubiliac; and oratorios by George Frederic Handel—Paulson explores the significance of the medium in which artists produced "sacred parody" and how these works both reflected and influenced attitudes toward the nature of Christianity in England. As England's faithful began to worry less about everlasting felicity in heaven and more about life on earth, these diverse artists provided them with new ways of thinking about both their spiritual and their social existence.

 

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Contents

The Sacrament of the Eucharist
1
The Case of A Harlots Progress 2 7
27
Atonement
88
The Empiricist Critique
92
Deism Hoadly and Antinomianism
106
The Harlots Last Supper
119
Incarnation
133
The Living Woman
150
Jonathan Richardson
227
Christ and Antinous
242
Resurrection
252
Hogarths Resurrections
274
The Magnificat and Jubilate Agno 2 89
289
David the Psalmist
302
The Cornucopia
318
Mary Rahab and Tirzah 3 31
331

Redemption
165
The Dunciad
185
Mediation
201
The Mediation of Esther
214
Blake and Hogarth
344
Index
407
Copyright

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2003)

Ronald Paulson is William D. and Robin Mayer Professor of the Humanities at the Johns Hopkins University. His many books include Don Quixote in England: The Aesthetics of Laughter, also available from Johns Hopkins.

Bibliographic information