Witness Against the Beast is a groundbreaking interdisciplinary study in which the renowned social historian E. P. Thompson contends that most of the assumptions scholars have made about William Blake are misleading and unfounded. Brilliantly reexamining Blake's cultural milieu and intellectual background, Thompson detects in Blake's poetry a repeated call to resist the usury and commercialism of the "Antichrist" embodied by contemporary society--to "witness against the beast."
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E.P. Thompson (1924 1993) was one of England’s foremost historians and social critics. His books include Customs in Common, Witness Against the Beast, Making History, The Romantics, and The Essential E.P. Thompson (all published by The New Press), as well as The Making of the English Working Class.Review:
Almost every page offers fresh evidence not merely of his vast overflowing erudition, but of his wit, his humanity, his soaring historical imagination. -- The Guardian
It is a brilliant and provocative case, argued with a mixture of millennial passion and dizzy academic charm, which holds one protesting but enthralled. -- New York Review of Books
The union of knowledge with imagination and conviction is the mark of this book, as it seems to have been of Thompson's life. The book also communicates the excitement of the scholar-explorer in his quest. . . A splendid conclusion to a life of great scholarship. -- New York Times Book Review
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Book Description New Pr, 1993. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M1565840585
Book Description New Pr, 1993. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P111565840585
Book Description Book Condition: Brand New. New. Bookseller Inventory # A11760
Book Description New Pr. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 1565840585 New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW7.0659872
Book Description The New Press, New York, 1993. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. First Edition.. 284 pages. Hardcover with dustjacket. New book. LITERARY CRITICISM. E. P. Thompson's long-awaited book on William Blake was published shortly after the historian's death in August 1993. Written with a vivid passion, and bearing the marks of Thompson's lifelong struggle against authoritarian and anti-humanitarian politics both at the level of the individual and of the state, Witness Against the Beast: William Blake and the Moral Law is a profound enquiry into the structure of Blake's thought and the character of his sensibility. Its qualities are among those which place Thompson himself in the same tradition of dissenting values and non-conforming radicalism represented by Blake some two hundred years earlier. Contents of book: 1. Works or faith?; 2. Antinomianisms; 3. The 'Ranting' impulse; 4. The polite witness; 5. Radical dissent; 6. A peculiar people; 7. Anti-hegemony; Appendix 1. The Muggletonian archive; Appendix 2. William Blake's mother; Part II. Human Images: Introduction; 8. The new Jerusalem Church; 9. 'The Divine Image'; 10. From innocence to experience; 11. 'London'; 12. 'The Human Abstract'; 13. Conclusion. Includes an Index. "Everything characteristic of the late E. P. Thompson - his clarity, humanity, and breadth of learning - is present in this book." Financial Times "The book stands as a tribute by an outstanding historian to an idiosyncratic genius. - Literary Review "Thompson speaks to us once more in his highly individual voice through the pages of this vital and challenging work.'" Tribune "This book should go onto every undergraduate's reading list." - Evening Standard "A stunning, undoubtedly major work." - Anarchist Studies (Key Words: William Blake, Edward Palmer Thompson, Literary Criticism, English History, Ethics, Radicalism, Religion, Crabb Robinson, Jesus Christ, Jacob Boehme, Deism, Emanuel Swedenborg, Religious Dissenters, Christopher Hill). book. Bookseller Inventory # 69855X1