Knowledge of Things Human and Divine

Vico’s New Science and "Finnegans Wake"

Donald Phillip Verene

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September 10, 2003
278 pages, 6 1/8 x 9 1/4
ISBN: 9780300099584
Cloth

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This is the first book to examine in full the interconnections between Giambattista Vico’s new science and James Joyce’s Finnegans Wake. Maintaining that Joyce is the greatest modern “interpreter” of Vico, Donald Phillip Verene demonstrates how images from Joyce’s work offer keys to Vico’s philosophy. Verene presents the entire course of Vico’s philosophical thought as it develops in his major works, with Joyce’s words and insights serving as a guide.
The book devotes a chapter to each period of Vico’s thought, from his early orations on education to his anti-Cartesian metaphysics and his conception of universal law, culminating in his new science of the history of nations. Verene analyzes Vico’s major works, including all three editions of the New Science. The volume also features a detailed chronology of the philosopher’s career, historical illustrations related to his works, and an extensive bibliography of Vico scholarship and all English translations of his writings.

Donald Phillip Verene is Charles Howard Candler Professor of Metaphysics and Moral Philosophy and director of the Institute for Vico Studies at Emory University. His previous books include Vico’s Science of Imagination.

“Verene has joined a masterful account of the progress of Vico’s thought and writing to a parallel, or overlapping, commentary on the complex and often cryptically concealed Vichian aspects of James Joyce’s work. This book is of the first importance.”—Donald R. Kelley, author of Fortunes of History: Historical Inquiry from Herder to Huizinga

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