Vertuall Paradise: Vaulting Ambitions Brought to Earth in Early Modern England


ACLS Project Development Grants




"Vertuall Paradise" traces visions of paradise from Spenser to Milton alongside the material practices of making poems, plays, books, and gardens in the period, with a particular focus on imperial, ecological, and ethical implications of these cross-media conversations. By close reading texts, objects, and landscapes, the book reveals tensions between the virtual paradisal spaces and the material conditions that both inspire flights of fancy and bring them down to earth. "Vertuall Paradise" demonstrates the profound resources the early modern period offers us as we face our own complex political, social, and environmental challenges. This grant supports writing during summer 2021. (Photography by Matt Dilyard.)