443. Marketplace of Letters: Iberian Humanism

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Fray Luis de Leon, Antonio Nebrija, Beatriz Galindo and other scholars bring the Renaissance to Spain.



Further Reading

• E.L. Rivers, Fray Luis de León: The Original Poems (London: 1983).


• D. Hildner, Poetry and Truth in the Spanish Works of Fray Luis de León (London: 1992).

• J.N.H. Lawrance, “Nuño de Guzmán and Early Spanish Humanism: Some Reconsiderations,” Medium Aevum 51 (1982), 55-85.

• J.N.H. Lawrance, “Humanism in the Iberian Penninsula,” in A. Goodwin and A. MacKay (eds), The Impact of Humanism on Western Europe (London: 1990), 220-58.

• S. McManus, Empire of Eloquence: the Classical Rhetorical Tradition in Colonial Latin America and the Iberian World (Cambridge: 2021).

• C.G. Noreña, Studies in Spanish Renaissance Thought (The Hague: 1975).

• T. O’Reilly, Humanism and Religion in Early Modern Spain: John of the Cross, Francisco de Aldana, Luis de Leon (London: 2021).

• C.P. Thompson, The Strife of Tongues: Fray Luis de Leon and the Golden Age of Spain (Cambridge: 1988).

• K.E. van Liere, “Humanism and Scholasticism in Sixteenth-Century Academe: Five Student Orations from the University of Salamanca,” Renaissance Quarterly 53 (2000), 57-107.


Brad Rappaport on 14 April 2024

I find it dispiriting that…

I find it dispiriting that the translation of kilometers into miles should be explicitly directed at a British audience, and reference made to Arsenal with the assumption of widespread understanding. It seems all popular philosophy in the English language is to be found in the UK or Commonwealth countries.

I am glad to hear European doings in other lands cast in moral terms that are a bit more complicated than those of Walt Disney. Good and evil has its place, but it is a category distinction that can be applied well or poorly. University instructors should take the risk of saying unpopular things.

In reply to by Brad Rappaport

Peter Adamson on 14 April 2024


Well as an American who lived in the UK for 12 years, I tend to refer to the cultures of both. Actually I think Arsenal has a bigger global reach than most American sports teams, except maybe the Yankees, whose symbol can be seen on hats all over the world. I actually got practice as a kid for hating Man City by hating the Yankees. And make absolutely no apologies for either! (Especially today, when City retook the lead in the Premiereship.)

Brad Rappaport on 21 April 2024

Hi, Peter. Thank you for…

Hi, Peter. Thank you for your answer. Really, all joking aside, Philosophy Now, The Philosopher, The Philosophers' Magazine, are all British outfits, as is your own podcast and the In Our Time series which offers a comparable level of analysis of noteworthy thinkers. The Sophia Club, an organization that hosts soirees organized around a philosophical talk at the center, I think is Australian. If you add to this the fact that there are public intellectuals in France who are given airtime as worth hearing by a general audience, and a TV show in Germany I can think of that also centers on debate of intellectual questions, the United States does seem sterile ground for public philosophy. 

In reply to by Brad Rappaport

Peter Adamson on 21 April 2024

US and public philosophy

Yes I think that's true, and maybe goes hand-in-hand with the generally low level of public discourse in the States. There are some good philosophy podcasts from the States though, like Hi Phi Nation, Elucidations, and the UnMute Podcast. And although mine has been produced in the UK and Germany at least I have an American accent!

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