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Dover Beach: Understanding the Pains of Bereavement

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  18 September 2006

Mary Midgley
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Matthew Arnold, writing sadly of the receding Sea of Faith, gave his image a vast and deadly application —

… The world, which seems

To lie before us like a land of dreams

So various, so beautiful, so new,

Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light,

Nor certitude, nor peace, nor help for pain—

(emphasis mine)

Research Article
2006 The Royal Institute of Philosophy


This is an expanded version of Mary Midgely’s ‘Dover Beach Revisited: Concluding Reflections’ from the Oxford Handbook for Religion and Science edited by Philip Clayton and Zach Simpson (OUP 2006), by permission of Oxford University Press.