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CCI Colloquium Series, 2014-15

  • Dr. AYŞE ÇELİKKOL, November 10, at 12.40.
    • Swinburne, Logos, and Deep Time

The Victorian poet Algernon Charles Swinburne’s “Hymn of Man” locates reason both inside and outside the human subject, thus questioning modern secular narratives of self-reliance. This paper focuses especially on Swinburne’s construal of “deep time,” a notion derived from the discovery that the Earth’s history extended far beyond the six thousand years postulated by readings of the Bible. It is especially in portrayals of deep time that Swinburne employs a Heraclitean notion of logos that exceeds the individual subject, positioning the poet outside mainstream discourses of the secular in the Victorian period.

“The true field and subject of imposture are things not known…. Whence it happens that nothing is more firmly believed than what we know the least….”

Montaigne, Essays, Book I, chapter 32.