The first three centuries of Christianity are increasingly seen in modern schol- arship as sites of complexity. Sacred Ritual, Profane Space examines the Christian meeting places of the time and overturns long-held notions about the earliest Christians as utopian rather than place-bound people. By mapping what is known from early Christian texts onto the archaeolog- ical data for Roman domestic spaces, Jenn Cianca provides a new lens for examining the relationship between early Christianity and sites of worship. She proposes that not only were Roman homes sacred sites in their own right but they were also considered sacred by the Christian communities that used them. In many cases, meeting space would have included the presence of the Roman domestic cult shrines. Despite the fact that the domestic cult was poly- theistic, Cianca asserts that its practices likely continued in places used for worship by Christians. She also argues that continued practice of the domestic cult in Roman domestic spaces did not preclude Christians from using houses as churches or from understanding their rituals or their meeting places as sacred. Raising a host of questions about identity, ritual affiliation, and domestic practice, Sacred Ritual, Profane Space demonstrates how sacred space was constructed through ritual enactment in early Christian communities. Jenn Cianca is associate professor of classical studies and liberal arts at Bishop’s University. The concept of vital force – the immanent energy that promotes the processes of life in the body and in nature – has proved a source of endless fascination and controversy. Indeed, the question of what vitalizes the body has haunted humanity since antiquity, and became even more pressing during the Scientific Revolution and beyond. Examining the complexities and theories about vital force in Spanish moder- nity, Nicolás Fernández-Medina’s Life Embodied offers a novel and provocative assessment of the question of bodily life in Spain. Starting with Juan de Cabri- ada’s landmark Carta filosófica, médico-chymica of 1687 and ending with Ramón Gómez de la Serna’s avant-gardism of the 1910s, Fernández-Medina incorporates discussions of anatomy, philosophy, science, critical theory, history of medicine, and literary studies to argue that concepts of vital force served as powerful vehicles to interrogate the possibilities and limits of corporeality. Pay- ing close attention to how the body’s capabilities were conceived and strategi- cally woven into critiques of modernity, Fernández-Medina engages the work of Miguel Boix y Moliner, Martín Martínez, Diego de Torres Villarroel, Sebastián Guerrero Herreros, Ignacio María Ruiz de Luzuriaga, Gaspar Melchor de Jovel- lanos, Pedro Mata y Fontanet, Ángela Grassi, Julián Sanz del Río, Miguel de Unamuno, and Pío Baroja, among others. Drawing on extensive research and analysis, Life Embodied breaks new ground as the first book to address the question of vital force in Spanish modernity. Nicolás Fernández-Medina is associate professor of Spanish and philosophy and co-director of the Spanish and Italian Modernist Studies Forum at Pennsylvania State University. 2 9 M Q U P S P R I N G 2 0 1 8 S P E C I F I C AT I O N S Studies in Christianity and Judaism Series June 2018 978-0-7735-5333-0 $34.95A CDN, $34.95A US, £28.99 paper 978-0-7735-5332-3 $110.00S CDN, $110.00S US, £91.00 cloth 6 x 9 264pp 16 photos, 1 map, 5 diagrams eBook available S P E C I F I C AT I O N S McGill-Queen’s Studies in the History of Ideas June 2018 978-0-7735-5337-8 $37.95A CDN, $37.95A US, £31.00 paper 978-0-7735-5336-1 $120.00S CDN, $120.00S US, £99.00 cloth 6 x 9 424pp 21 b&w photos eBook available Life Embodied The Promise of Vital Force in Spanish Modernity nicolás fernández-medina A compelling tour through the scientific, philosophical, and cultural meanings of vital force in Spanish modernity. R E L I G I O U S S T U D I E S • H I S T O R Y H I S T O R Y O F I D E A S • E U R O P E A N H I S T O R Y Sacred Ritual, Profane Space The Roman House as Early Christian Meeting Place jenn cianca A reassessment of earliest Christian worship spaces as a crucible of sanctity, identity, and cultic affiliation.