Scripture and the English Poetic Imagination

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Description

A "stunning and magisterial work"

"This is a book of immense learning and of profound significance for our understanding of English literature and its biblical sources and fabric. Jeffrey ranges with fluency and insight from the ancient world to the twenty-first century--from the Bible itself to Augustine, Dante, Chaucer, Marlowe, Donne, Herbert, and on through Margaret Avison and Gjertrud Schnackenberg. Jeffrey's capacity to speak alternately with rustic humor and in high prophetic strains makes his study not just exceptionally illuminating but also richly entertaining. Every chapter uncovers unexpected gems. His powerful writing repeatedly moved me to laughter as well as tears."
--Dennis Danielson, professor emeritus of English, University of British Columbia; author of The Tao of Right and Wrong

"In this stunning and magisterial work, the fruit of a lifetime's love of literature and Scripture, David Lyle Jeffrey combines an extraordinary depth and range with a keen scholarly, cultural, and literary sensibility to trace the influence of the Bible's language and spirit on literature. Apart from subjects, idiom, or diction, a scriptural consciousness pervades English literature from Caedmon to Wilbur. But given the current lack of coherence, Jeffery ponders how literary criticism can regain its authority or literature can offer a hope that is communal and responsible. This book is a must for all lovers of literature."
--Micheal O'Siadhail, author of The Five Quintets

"To read Jeffrey's book is to sit at the feet of a wise teacher, learned in both literature and the Bible, ever ready to attune his students to the ways Scripture's music plays in and through centuries of great poetry--from Dante and Chaucer, Donne and Herbert, Coleridge and Hopkins to contemporary poets like Avison and Hecht. A timely contribution to all who till the field of the humanities, and a vital reminder that so much of our great literature is built upon the foundation of a Greater Book."
--Paul J. Contino, professor of great books, Pepperdine University

"Jeffrey's sensitive and insightful analyses of his chosen texts, with valuable cultural and literary context provided, are a model of what literary criticism should do."
--Holly Ordway, professor of English, Houston Baptist University; author of Apologetics and the Christian Imagination

Contributors

David Jeffrey, Author

David Lyle Jeffrey, Author

David Lyle Jeffrey (PhD, Princeton University) is Distinguished Professor of Literature and the Humanities at Baylor University in Waco, Texas, and professor emeritus of English literature at the University of Ottawa. He has written numerous books, including A Dictionary of Biblical Tradition in English Literature, People of the Book, In the Beauty of Holiness, and a commentary on the Gospel of Luke.

View more by David Lyle Jeffrey

David Lyle Jeffrey, Author

David Lyle Jeffrey (PhD, Princeton University) is Distinguished Professor of Literature and the Humanities at Baylor University in Waco, Texas, and professor emeritus of English literature at the University of Ottawa. He has written numerous books, including A Dictionary of Biblical Tradition in English Literature, People of the Book, In the Beauty of Holiness, and a commentary on the Gospel of Luke.

View more by David Lyle Jeffrey