New Book: A Modern Coleridge: Cultivation, Addiction, Habits
Palgrave Macmillan, ISBN 9781137531452
Publication Date: June 2015
Hardcover £55. Also available as an ebook (EPUB), ebook (PDF)
A Modern Coleridge presents Coleridge as an eminently modern thinker, whose works stage the interrelatedness of the discourses of cultivation, addiction, and habit.
These, the book shows, all revolve around a post-Kantian idea of free will, essential to Coleridge's idea of the 'human'. Rather than being interested in opium, A Modern Coleridge focuses on the phenomenon of addiction as a disease of volition symptomatic of a civilization in excess, posing a threat to cultivation, to the unfolding of Coleridgean 'humanity'.
Habit is posited as a third term between cultivation and addiction, the human and the non-human; being constitutive parts of Coleridgean cultivation, good habits (as opposed to bad ones) turn the working of free will itself into an automatism. Engaging with philosophy, ethics, politics and poetics,
A Modern Coleridge reframes both prose and poetry, including The Ancient Mariner, Christabel, Kubla Khan, Dejection: an Ode, or The Eolian Harp.