José de Letamendi y Manjarrés (1828–1897) was one of the most renowned intellectual figures in nineteenth-century Spain. Although he served as Professor of Anatomy in Barcelona, and then as Professor of General Pathology in Madrid, his interests and publications varied widely and included topics ranging from criminality, economics, linguistics and sociology, to art, music, philosophy and poetry. Critics since the nineteenth century have both celebrated and condemned Letamendi’s work, and there is considerable misunderstanding surrounding its importance, particularly when it comes to those areas that were central to his thinking such as modernity, progress, corporeality, holism and social degeneration. This article sheds new light on the relevance of Letamendi’s socio-cultural theory in its nineteenth-century Spanish/European context and demonstrates in what respects it offers an innovative analysis of modern progress in Spain.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cultural Studies
- Literature and Literary Theory