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Sacred Realism: Religion and Imagination in Modern Spanish Narrative (review)

Sacred Realism: Religion and Imagination in Modern Spanish Narrative (review) NOËL VALIS. Sacred Realism: Religion and Imagination in Modern Spanish Narrative. New Haven & London: Yale UP, 2010. 356 pp. Linda M. Willem What is the relation between faith and fiction, between belief and the novel? In exploring this intriguing question Noël Valis has created a remarkable book that challenges the prevailing view of religion as a spent force that has withered away in the age of modernity and the secular novel. In lieu of the split between religion and secularized modernity, she posits the concept of secular realism as an intertwining of the two within novels written by Spanish liberal writers during three historical periods of change and crisis: the late eighteenth-century through the 1840's; the Bourbon Restoration; and the Second Republic through the Civil War. Lamenting the "dismal impact of Michel Foucault" and other posthumanist and poststructuralist approaches, which have fostered "the academy's own contemporary prejudices" toward religion as primarily a repressive instrument of power, Valis calls for a "fuller understanding" of Spanish literature that acknowledges novelistic expressions of "religiously infused, humanitarian sensibility" (5-6). Both spiritual belief and fictional belief depend on the ability to imagine the intangible, and Valis shows how sacred realism incorporates structures http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Anales Galdosianos Anales Galdosianos

Sacred Realism: Religion and Imagination in Modern Spanish Narrative (review)

Anales Galdosianos , Volume 46 (1) – Dec 19, 2011

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Publisher
Anales Galdosianos
Copyright
Copyright © by the Author
ISSN
2161-301X
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Abstract

NOËL VALIS. Sacred Realism: Religion and Imagination in Modern Spanish Narrative. New Haven & London: Yale UP, 2010. 356 pp. Linda M. Willem What is the relation between faith and fiction, between belief and the novel? In exploring this intriguing question Noël Valis has created a remarkable book that challenges the prevailing view of religion as a spent force that has withered away in the age of modernity and the secular novel. In lieu of the split between religion and secularized modernity, she posits the concept of secular realism as an intertwining of the two within novels written by Spanish liberal writers during three historical periods of change and crisis: the late eighteenth-century through the 1840's; the Bourbon Restoration; and the Second Republic through the Civil War. Lamenting the "dismal impact of Michel Foucault" and other posthumanist and poststructuralist approaches, which have fostered "the academy's own contemporary prejudices" toward religion as primarily a repressive instrument of power, Valis calls for a "fuller understanding" of Spanish literature that acknowledges novelistic expressions of "religiously infused, humanitarian sensibility" (5-6). Both spiritual belief and fictional belief depend on the ability to imagine the intangible, and Valis shows how sacred realism incorporates structures

Journal

Anales GaldosianosAnales Galdosianos

Published: Dec 19, 2011

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