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Editors’ Introduction

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Picturing Paradise in Nineteenth-Century British and American Art

image of Religion and the Arts

Framing the eleven essays in this special double issue, this introduction opens a discussion, continued throughout the issue, on the pervasive impulse toward and elastic meaning of the ideal of paradise which was of particular interest to nineteenth-century British and American artists. It describes the arc of the issue, which is organized into three parts: on British art, American art, and architectural projects. It is bracketed by an essay that looks back to the influence of Renaissance Florence on nineteenth-century British and Americans and a postscript on paradisiacal themes in the work of two contemporary British and American artists. The genesis of this special issue is the 2016 symposium Picturing Paradise in Nineteenth Century British and American Art: Past, Lost, Regained organized by the Association of Scholars of Christianity in the History of Art.

Affiliations: 1: Lander University ; 2: Taylor University


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