Alien Albion

Alien Albion: Literature and Immigration in Early Modern England

SCOTT OLDENBURG
Copyright Date: 2014
Pages: 304
https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.3138/j.ctt9qh9qc
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  • Book Info
    Alien Albion
    Book Description:

    Alien Albionchallenges assumptions about the origins of English national identity and the importance of religious, class, and local identities in the early modern era.

    eISBN: 978-1-4426-6749-5
    Subjects: History, Language & Literature

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. Acknowledgments
    (pp. vii-2)
  4. Introduction: Forms of Multiculturalism in Early Modern England
    (pp. 3-20)

    Towards the end ofAn Apology for Poetry(1595), Sir Philip Sidney asks, “For what is it to make folks gape at a wretched beggar or a beggarly clown; or against law of hospitality, to jest at strangers because they speak not English so well as we do? What do we learn?”² By strangers, Sidney meant non-English peoples residing in or passing through England, most of whom were European immigrants seeking refuge from religious turmoil on the continent. Although even a cursory reading of Sidney’sArcadiawill no doubt call into question Sidney’s sincerity regarding laughter at “beggarly clowns,” he...

  5. Part One: Sectarian Inclusivity
    • Chapter One From the Dutch Acrobat to Hance Beerpot: Multicultural Mid-Tudor England
      (pp. 23-44)

      The first two chapters of this book focus on “sectarian inclusivity,” multicultural communities founded on common religious beliefs. In his discussion of how Mary I’s reign attempted to institute its own version of English national identity, Christopher Highley argues that, contrary to what seems to be a scholarly consensus, English nationhood need not be framed as an outcome of Protestantism, that Mary and Catholic English writers can also be seen to assert their particular version of Englishness.² This chapter builds on Highley’s observation, focusing on the way an embattled Protestantism led to the forging of a community based not on...

    • Chapter Two The Rhetoric of Religious Refuge under Elizabeth I
      (pp. 45-72)

      The ascension of Elizabeth I to the throne in 1558 naturally resulted in a return of Protestant refugees who had fled to the continent, but Elizabeth’s policies were not nearly as liberal as those of her brother Edward. Leaders of the stranger churches entered negotiations on their return, amid the so-called Elizabethan Settlement of 1559, under which the stranger churches would not be granted the latitude they had previously enjoyed. Under Elizabeth stranger churches were under the purview of the Bishop of London, Edmund Grindal. Thus, Austin Friars, which had been taken from the strangers under Mary, was turned over...

  6. Part Two: Provincial Globalism
    • Chapter Three Artisanal Tolerance: The Case of Thomas Deloney
      (pp. 75-98)

      Despite attempts to use narratives of Protestant persecution to keep sectarian inclusivity active in England, by the 1590s tensions between some English subjects and their immigrant neighbours had intensified, rendering religious affiliation less important to social cohesion. England’s involvement in continental affairs – for instance, Leicester’s loss of support in the Netherlands in 1586–7 and Essex’s failed expedition in support of Henri IV in 1591 – led some to feel that their immigrant neighbours were perhaps less committed than the English in the continental conflicts.² The author of the Dutch Church Libel complained,

      And our pore soules, are cleane...

    • Chapter Four Language and Labour in Thomas Dekker’s Provincial Globalism
      (pp. 99-114)

      As an introduction to his discussion of canting inLanthorne and Candle-light(1608) Thomas Dekker retells the story of the Tower of Babel. The relationship between cant (the supposed language of London’s underworld) and the Biblical tale of linguistic diversity seems clear enough, but along the way Dekker digresses in a way that sheds light on his most well-known work,The Shoemaker’s Holiday(1599), and its relationship to promoting a version of hospitality at once both provincial and global.¹

      Although Dekker follows Flavius Josephus in framing Nimrod as the hubristic sinner of the tale, Dekker’s version has a decidedly artisanal...

  7. Part Three: Worldly Domesticity
    • Chapter Five The “Jumbled” City: The Dutch Courtesan and Englishmen for My Money
      (pp. 117-137)

      In the previous chapters amid the various relations between strangers and English men and women – solidarity based on provincial globalism or sectarian inclusivity – we have seen marriages or near marriages between English and strangers. The French shoemaker John Denevale and the Dutch shoemaker Haunce were entertained as credible suitors for Florence in Deloney’sGentle Craft, Part I; likewise, inGentle Craft, Part II, among several potential mates, the prosperous Richard Casteler chooses to marry a Dutch woman. Beyond fictional matches or near matches, John Marston of Coventry, father to the dramatist of the same name, married Mary Guarsi,...

    • Chapter Six Shakespeare, the Foreigner
      (pp. 138-172)

      Every so often the authorship of the plays and poems attributed to William Shakespeare is called into question by someone claiming not only that Shakespeare was not the author of said works but that the real author was not even English.¹ In April 2000The Timespublished an article arguing that Shakespeare was really Sicilian.² Sometime Oxfordian Sigmund Freud entertained the idea that Shakespeare was really French, and philosopher Kuno Fischer is said to have professed that Shakespeare must have been of German ancestry.³ Although these claims never gain much of a sympathetic audience, they point to Shakespeare’s status in...

  8. Conclusion: The Return of Hans Beer-Pot
    (pp. 173-184)

    Despite the development of English national identity alongside anti-alien sentiment in the seventeenth century, writers throughout the period still appealed to the value of hospitality and the modes of imagining multicultural community explored in this book. In the Marian interludeWealth and Health, discussed in chapter 1, Hance Beerpot is banished by Good Remedy, but the name lingered in the English imagination. In 1618 he reentered England in his own play, Dabridgcourt Belchier’sHans Beer-Pot, His Invisible Comedie of See Me, and See Me Not.¹ Although Belchier owned substantial land in Guilsborough, Northamptonshire, he wrote the play while in Utrecht,...

  9. Notes
    (pp. 185-244)
  10. Bibliography
    (pp. 245-282)
  11. Index
    (pp. 283-290)