"In the very grain of ordinary life, knotted multiplicity."

By J J Cohen
In the Middle

Becoming Human by J. Allan MitchellBecoming Human is one of the best books published in medieval studies in the past decade -- and considering how many excellent works have appeared over that time, that, I think, is very high praise. But medieval literature is far from the book's only purview: anyone interested in materiality, objects, ecocriticism or the posthuman will want to read it. Deftly combining rigorous textual research with deep reading in the new materialism, object oriented philosophy, and ecological theory, Becoming Human offers "a strongly revisionist account of medieval cosmology, ontology, economy and ethics" that divulges how "complicated ecologies underpin even the tidiest of cosmologies" (175). As I attempt description of Mitchell's project, the adjectives that come to mind seem too hyperbolic: scholars are supposed to be sparing in their praise, and are not allowed to end sentences with exclamation points!

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