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humanities 233 university of toronto quarterly, volume 73, number 1, winter 2003/4 their concern with the conflicts between individual aspirations and the social medium in order to critique English philistinism and insularity. Unsurprisingly, Argyle finds that the >main qualities of culture [in these late novels] B internal, becoming, harmonious, aesthetic, disinterested B all derive from the German idea of Bildung.= The pace of the study picks up slightly in chapter 7, which examines various fictional narratives of a crisis of faith (Froude=s The Nemesis of Faith, Rutherford=s Autobiography and Deliverance, Gissing=s Workers in the Dawn, and Ward=s Robert Elsmere) to argue that German biblical criticism and scientific knowledge were cited as keys to religious doubt in nineteenthcentury England. The penultimate chapter examines the reception of Schopenhauer =s and Nietzsche=s philosophical systems by several novelists, focusing in particular on Gissing=s The Whirlpool as an >all-inclusive example= of Schopenhauerian pessimism. The book concludes with a consideration of Trollope=s and Disraeli=s attitudes towards the German Reich and allusions to Weimar Germany in the works of Meredith, Conrad, Forster, and Lawrence, among others. Argyle tends to digress into quotation-heavy synopses of topics as arcane (and arguably fusty) as the distinction between Jean Paul=s and Goethe=s editorial modes of recollection in their relation to the tone and structure of Sartor Resartus. Too frequently, she lapses into prolonged itemizing of people and books, a kind of name-dropping that isn=t taken anywhere interesting and fails to contribute to a theoretically acute engagement with concepts as central to this work as cultural transmission and intertextuality. But if Germany as Model and Monster labours to escape the monotonous cataloguing of allusions, understood broadly to include references to >biographical material about the authors as their own first readers, contemporary literary works, periodical articles, and other documentation,= it nevertheless demonstrates an appreciation for the particularities of texts and the potential subtleties of cultural influence, a virtue evident in Argyle=s scrupulous attention to the plots and structures of individual works and her occasional ability to contextualize these against a broader intellectual and literary background (a skill enhanced by her apparent facility with German). (PETER W. SINNEMA) William Westfall. The Founding Moment: Church, Society, and the Construction of Trinity College McGill-Queen=s University Press. xiv, 160. $49.95 According to Bishop John Strachan, the passing of the University Act in 1849 turned King=s College from a place of godly worship into a >nursery of infidelity.= The secularization of his cherished institution threatened not 234 letters in canada 2002 university of toronto quarterly, volume 73, number 1, winter 2003/4 only the position of the established church, but the role of religion in forming the character of society=s educated elite. Strachan responded with the creation of Trinity College in 1851, a private Anglican institution that would shoulder the mantle of what King=s should have become, if not for the imposition of the godless University of Toronto. This narrative of continuity between the demise of King=s and Trinity=s emergence is skilfully dismantled by William Westfall=s The Founding Moment, a slim but engaging monograph that slices deeply into the social and cultural world of midnineteenth -century Canada West. Instead of providing a standard institutional history of Trinity, Westfall positions the college=s >founding moment= as the point of disruption between the old colonial order and the Anglican church=s search to redefine a new sense of private religion with a public influence in the wake of disestablishment. The Founding Moment opens with Strachan=s procession down Toronto=s Queen Street to a field on the west side of the city where the new college would be built. Despite the bishop=s rhetoric at this event, Westfall deftly undermines his assertions of continuity by observing who participated in the celebration and the social geography of the procession. The picture that emerges is one of contrast between the privileged position of King=s, built with public money and latitudinarian principles, and that of Trinity, which was privately funded and distinctively Anglican, requiring strict religious requirements for both faculty and students. Set apart from the temptations...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1712-5278
Print ISSN
0042-0247
Pages
pp. 233-235
Launched on MUSE
2014-07-02
Open Access
No
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