Against Reproduction

Against Reproduction: Where Renaissance Texts Come From

STEPHEN GUY-BRAY
Copyright Date: 2009
Pages: 240
https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.3138/9781442685819
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  • Book Info
    Against Reproduction
    Book Description:

    Offering fresh perspectives on well-known texts,Against Reproductionis an accessible and compelling book that will affect the study of both Renaissance literature and queer theory.

    eISBN: 978-1-4426-8581-9
    Subjects: Language & Literature

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. Preface
    (pp. ix-xiv)
  4. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xv-2)
  5. Introduction: The Work of Art in the Age of Human Reproduction
    (pp. 3-43)

    In herSociable Letters, first published in 1664, the Duchess of Newcastle spoke of her literary productions as ‘paper bodies,’ a brilliantly memorable phrase that provides the title for a recent selection of her writing. As the editors of this selection note, Newcastle described her first book (Poems and Fancies, published in 1653) ‘as a kind of substitute for physical offspring: “Condemne me not for making such a coyle / About my Book, alas it is my Childe.”’¹ In these lines, Newcastle uses the familiar reproductive metaphor, according to which the author is the parent of the work and writing...

  6. 1 Marriages
    (pp. 44-90)

    The three plays I discuss in this chapter are in some ways very different. For instance, while both Lyly’sThe Woman in the Mooneand Middleton and Dekker’sThe Roaring Girlare comedies, Shakespeare and Fletcher’sThe Two Noble Kinsmenbarely makes the transition from tragedy to tragicomedy – if indeed it ever does. As well,The Woman in the Mooneis set in a pastoral land called Utopia,The Roaring Girlin early seventeenth-century London, andThe Two Noble Kinsmenin ancient Athens. And while Shakespeare and Fletcher’s play is the latest version of a story that can be...

  7. 2 Seductions
    (pp. 91-138)

    In this chapter I discuss three works from the 1590s: Daniel’sDelia, Marlowe’sHero and Leander, and Marston’sThe Metamorphosis of Pigmalions Image. These works represent two of the most popular genres of the period: the sonnet sequence and the epyllion (in fact, in England these genres flourished only in that period). The 1590s have long been distinguished as a decade in which much of the greatest English literature was written and in which many writers who are now central to our sense of what Renaissance literature is began or ended their careers. But it was not merely a good,...

  8. 3 Beginnings
    (pp. 139-176)

    To a greater or lesser extent, all the texts I have discussed to this point in the book employ the reproductive metaphor. For the poems I discuss in this chapter, however, any metaphor that attempts to describe the process and purpose of literary composition is especially important. Sidney’sAstrophil and Stella, Milton’sParadise Lost, and Bunyan’s ‘The Author’s Apology for his Book’ all focus on beginnings and introductions. Bunyan’s poem does so because it functions as a preface toThe Pilgrim’s Progress, of course, but the situation is rather more complex in Sidney’s and Milton’s texts. We are accustomed to...

  9. Notes
    (pp. 177-196)
  10. Works Cited
    (pp. 197-214)
  11. Index
    (pp. 215-219)