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Document Details :
Title: De schipbreuk van een filosofie en de filosofie van een schipbreuk
Subtitle: Over het verband tussen de filosofie van Erasmus, Justus Lipsius, en de relazen van Jan Huygen Van Linschoten, Willem Bontekoe en Francisco Pelsaert
Author(s): ROOSE, Alexander
Journal: Spiegel der Letteren
Volume: 51 Issue: 2 Date: 2009
Stories of shipwrecks were a very popular genre during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. The maritime frame of reference became influential and predominant across a wide field of literature and theater. Even philosophers picked up the maritime metaphors. In those dark, violent, and stormy times philosophers urged their readers to remain faithful (Erasmus) and to face violent emotions with the constancy of a brave captain leading his ship to a serene harbour (Justus Lipsius). The ideas of these philosophers were present in the stories on shipwrecks. Thus, the Portuguese seaman Manoel Rangel remains faithful and modest. Captain Bontekoe is a model of pious constancy. But gradually, references to Erasmian and Neostoic philosophy disappear: popular culture and literature show a decline of Christian and neostoic influence. The story told by Francisco Pelsaert demonstrates the omnipresence of evil in man, whereas the stories of Van der Heiden and Hamel illustrate a new scientific discourse focusing not on human virtues, but on all the things human curiosity wants to discover.