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The Place of LandscapeConcepts, Contexts, Studies$
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Jeff Malpas

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780262015523

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262015523.001.0001

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Garden, City, or Wilderness? Landscape and Destiny in the Christian Imagination

Garden, City, or Wilderness? Landscape and Destiny in the Christian Imagination

Chapter:
(p.183) 10 Garden, City, or Wilderness? Landscape and Destiny in the Christian Imagination
Source:
The Place of Landscape
Author(s):

Philip Sheldrake

Publisher:
The MIT Press
DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262015523.003.0011

This chapter focuses on the important role played by landscape in the Christian religious imagination. It argues for the ambiguity of “landscape” in the sense that locales like forests, fields, and mountains are both geographic realities and imaginary realities. Many locales are considered powerful symbols of fear or desire. According to Simon Schama’s Landscape and Memory, “Landscapes are culture before they are nature; constructs of the imagination projected onto wood and water and rock.” This means that landscape is irreducibly historical since it portrays the material world mediated through human experience. It is also inevitably linked with issues of power because it provides the physical features upon which human beings draw and shape unique identities and distinct worldviews.

Keywords:   landscape, religious imagination, geographic realities, imaginary realities, Simon Schama, Landscape and Memory, power

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