The essays in this volume, by scholars across a range of disciplines, explore the historical construction of and changes to the concept and experience of creation.
The meaning of the noun 'creation', and the verb 'to create',
range from the traditional theological idea of God creating ex
nihilo to a more recent sense of the process of artistic
conception. This collection of thirteen essays, written by scholars
of music, literature, the visual arts, and theology, explores the
complicated relationship between medieval rituals and theology, and
the development of an idea of human artistic creation, which came
to the fore in the sixteenth century.
The volume concentrates on the period from the Carolingians to
the Counter-Reformation but also includes some twentieth-century
musicians. Each essay is dedicated to a particular topic concerned
with ritual or artistic beginnings, inventions, harmony and
disharmony, as well as representations or celebrations of creation.
Central themes include the interplay of the ideas of God as
creator, of God acting and recreating in medieval liturgy, of God
as artist – the deus artifex of the Pythagorean
cosmology, which was occasionally referred to as recently as the
early nineteenth century - and, finally, of the homo
creator, a concept in which man reflected (and eventually
replaced) God in his artistic creativity.
This book therefore features new, significant, individual
contributions from a range of scholarly disciplines, but, taken as
a whole, it also constitutes a complex interdisciplinary study,
with large-scale historical constructions.
"This book is very rich in suggestions and it is surely a very precious instrument to approach the question about the idea of creation and its conceptual implications in the different fields of knowledge." (A. Doninelli Parisoli, in: The Medieval Review, 08.09.17)