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200Rocky Mountain Review reached out beyond their own party. For these writers the restoration of monarchy was seen as healing past ills by restoring solid values. Whereas the monarchists persuaded a large audience to accept their views not through logic, but through a rhetoric of encompassing vision, the radicals, especially Milton in The Readie & Easie Way and Harrington in Wayes and Meanes, attempted to counter with treatises that sought to define readers and to make specific proposals for a new government and new definitions of liberty. Skerpan's analysis of the radicals' political and rhetorical failures provides an insightful look into the failure of the revolution they had won earlier. Skerpan's analysis of the rhetorical battles of the English Revolution is a significant contribution to our understanding of the competing discourses during this period and provides fresh insights on the revolution of the Saints. More broadly, Skerpan's fine book invites a return to rhetorical analysis and scholarship, something that has been missing from recent cultural studies. Friedman's study, meanwhile, is not only intellectually significant , but it is a pleasureable book well worth reading for anyone interested in the new debate over the rise and ultimate failure of the English Revolution. Thus, using different strategies, both Friedman and Skerpan provide us with new and important ways of looking at the diverse discourses of the revolutionary period. EUGENE R. CUNNAR New Mexico State University WILLIAM H. GALPERIN. The Return of the Visible in British Romanticism. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1993. 327 p. 1 he "visible" for Galperin suggests our capacity, evident in sudden distractions , to glance at the world on occasion without the ability fully to symbolize or organize what we see: "the representation of a world uncontrolled by human or authorial intervention" (87). This results in images that are "excessive and inchoate rather than denotative" (81). The word "return" in the study's title suggests a return in the sense of Freud's notion of repression— the reappearance of something that has never actually left. Galperin thus argues that "the visible is the central and unrivaled repressed of romanticism " (3). That is, although British romantic aesthetics and literary practice often malign the visible as inferior to imagination, this resistance must be read paradoxically as an indication of the visible's "foundational" status for romanticism. Because he finds evidence of the visible throughout romanticism , Galperin reads the efforts to denounce it as signs of repression. Galperin intends his thesis of a repression and return of the visible, not merely as a means of bringing to light ignored material from romantic texts, but indeed as a bold step toward new views of romanticism and of romantic subjectivity. In this he desires to distance himself both from traditional Book Reviews201 "humanistic criticism" and to move beyond poststructuralist readings of the last few decades (what he calls "revisionist tendencies"). This study presents itself, then, neither as a laudatory reading of the romantic urge for freedom, imagination, genius, etc., nor as a démystification that reveals the hegemonic source of such urges. It looks instead toward "romantic residue," in the form of visible material "prior to idealization," that tends to display a romanticism always already in contradiction with itself. A reading of the return of the repressed visible thus moves us beyond the currently popular subversions of a hegemonic romantic discourse, as it indicates a romanticism whose self-contradictions already lead it to resist its own hegemonic impulse—a "romanticism beside itself, capable at anyjuncture of redressing and even reinscribing its central inconsistencies" (24). Key to this reading of romanticism is a notion of "subject-position." Galperin suggests that the visible, as something not quite yet symbolized, is a sign of subjectivity's failure, or more specifically of the failure of the symbolic order to produce fully coherent subjects, true inmates of the prison house of language. He is concerned with ways in which the appearance of the visible (overtly evident in the stage, the panorama, and diorama), and resistance to it, are both cause and effect of new forms of subjectivity. The principal characters are Constable, Wordsworth (young and old), Lamb, Hazlitt, Coleridge, and Byron. At stake is the "beholder's...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1948-2833
Print ISSN
1948-2825
Pages
pp. 200-202
Launched on MUSE
2016-01-06
Open Access
No
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