The Poetics of Religious Toleration in the Long British Eighteenth Century

Date: 9 June, 2017
Time: 3pm-4pm
Location: Room 601, Michie Building (#9)

The recent pressures placed on liberal understandings of religious toleration by resurgent forms of fundamentalism and populism have reignited scholarly interest in the long history of circumscribing religion in civic life. Recent critical studies have suggested that religious toleration must be understood less as an inevitable march of enlightened progress than as a set of contingent and ‘awkward’ attempts to posit new forms of communal life under a politically secure and centralised state. Such attempts relied precariously on the forging of a new language and rhetorical repertoire. In this paper, Dr Brandon Chua examines understandings of public poetry that emerged out of the English monarchy’s attempts to institutionalise a form of religious freedom for Catholics and Protestant dissenters from the Church of England in the later part of the seventeenth century. Focusing on the rhetorical and aesthetic dimensions of the broad public discussion over the place of religious identity in a newly tolerant polity, this paper draws attention to the broader anxieties over how to construe the moral commitments requisite for definitions of civic duty in an order defined by diversity. The new forms of public poetry emerging in this period conveys, this paper suggests, specific insights into the corporeal, affective, and ethical re-education demanded by a new logic of toleration.​



Dr Brandon Chua is a UQ Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the School of Communication and Arts. He works mainly in the field of Restoration Literature, and has published on writers such as John Locke, the Earl of Rochester, and Aphra Behn. His current research interests centre around ideas of publics and publicity in the Early English Enlightenment.

Dr Brandon Chua


About Research Seminar and Workshop Series


School of Communication and Arts Research Seminar Series

The research seminar and workshop series occur each semester, each with a different topic and guest speaker from UQ or otherwise.

Friday, 11 March

Online via Zoom

Research Seminar - Tuning In with the Stethoscope in the Nineteenth CenturyDr Melissa Dickson (University of Birmingham)

Friday, 25 March


Early Adventures in Australian Actor Training

Dr Chris Hay

Friday, 8 April

Online via Zoom

Invention and reinvention in the landscape symbolism of Joachim PatinirMichael Levy

Friday, 29 April

Online via Zoom

Negotiating balance of cultures among Chinese Australians to facilitate ageing well

A/Prof Shuang Liu

Friday, 13 May


Redefining crisis in museums: insider’s perspectives on digital engagement

Dr Caroline Wilson-Barnao, Craig Middleton (National Museum of Australia), and Lisa Enright

Friday, 3 June

Hybrid: Online via Zoom and in person at the
SCA Writer's Studio
(Level 6, Michie)

A journey through the Australian environmental movement ecosystem

Dr Robyn Gulliver

Friday, 10 June

Online via Zoom

TBADr Alex Bevan



Level 6, Michie Building (#9)