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Renaissance Papers 2009

Renaissance Papers 2009

Editor Christopher Cobb
Copyright Date: 2010
Edition: NED - New edition
Published by: Boydell and Brewer,
Pages: 140
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  • Book Info
    Renaissance Papers 2009
    Book Description:

    Renaissance Papers collects the best scholarly essays submitted each year to the Southeastern Renaissance Conference. The 2009 volume features essays from the conference held at the University of South Carolina in Columbia. The volume opens with two essays focused on Renaissance literary criticism: one treating the Vergilian scholarship of Cristoforo Landino, the other analyzing the critical principles of Stephen Gosson's School of Abuse. The volume then turns to links between social and religious history and English Renaissance literature, with essays on representations of family in spiritual and political tracts, on the representation of office holders in English Renaissance drama, and on the rhetoric of colonialism in Elizabeth Cary's history of Edward II. Following these historical essays are three taking a more formal approach to Shakespeare's plays. These address the patterned behavior of couples in The Taming of the Shrew, characters representing eros in Love's Labors Lost, and Shakespeare's adaptation of Chaucerian narrative structures. The volume closes with a meditation on regeneration in the lyrics of George Herbert. Contributors: Brian Blackley, Ed Gieskes, Christopher Hodgkins, Helen Hull, Katherine Pilhuj, William Russell, Jonathan Sircy, John Stevens, Ruth Stevenson. Christopher Cobb is Assistant Professor of English at Saint Mary's College, Notre Dame, Indiana.

    eISBN: 978-1-57113-718-0
    Subjects: Language & Literature

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. [i]-[iv])
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. [v]-[viii])
  3. Landino, Vergil, and Plato
    (pp. 1-20)
    John Stevens

    The long line of late antique, medieval, and early Renaissance commentators on theAeneid, from Macrobius and Fulgentius to Bernardus Silvestris and Dante, interpret Vergil’s epic as an evolving tale of the hero’s moral progress from metaphorical infancy to mature responsibility, particularly in the first six books in which Aeneas gives up his adolescent love affair with Dido, accepts the duty to lead his people, and turns toward a contemplation of the virtues and vices of the immortal soul.¹ Their belief that theAeneiddemonstrates moral progress is an inheritance of Neoplatonic modes of interpretation derived ultimately from Plato’s theories...

  4. Experto Crede: Stephen Gosson and the Experience of the Critic
    (pp. 21-36)
    William M. Russell

    In the summer of 1579, London publisher Thomas Woodcock issued a pamphlet entitledThe Schoole of Abuseby poet, playwright, and sometime actor Stephen Gosson. This thin octavo, which in learned yet folksy prose decries the abuse of music, poetry, drama, and other popular pastimes, quickly ignited widespread critical debate. Responses to Gosson spanned the literary kinds, and interested parties covered the social spectrum from the lowliest players of the newly built London theaters to the court of Elizabeth I. On stage, Gosson was satirized in thePlay of Plays(1582) and indicted as a hypocrite through the facetious staging...

  5. “Lowe and lay ministers of the peace”: The Proliferation of Officeholding Manuals in Early Modern England
    (pp. 37-54)
    Helen L. Hull

    In William Shakespeare’sRichard III, even as he plots his way to the throne, Richard needs the support of English subjects—or at the very least, the appearance of their support. He solicits the aid of London’s lord mayor, who acts as his intermediary. Having heard Richard and Buckingham’s justification for executing Hastings, the Lord Mayor declares that he will “acquaint our duteous citizens / With all your just proceedings in this cause” (3.5.64–65).¹ Richard applauds this intent, since “to that end we wish’d your lordship here, / T’avoid the censure of the carping world” (3.5.66–67). Later, ignoring...

  6. Becoming Spiritual: Authority and Legitimacy in the Early Modern English Family
    (pp. 55-66)
    Jonathan Sircy

    In his 1598 political tractThe True Lawe of Free Monarchies, James VI oddly asserts, “By the Law of Nature, the king becomes a naturall father to all his lieges at his coronation.”¹ This claim is curious for three reasons.

    First, James insists that the pre-cultural injunction of natural law not only informs but plays an active role in a performance that seems wholly cultural. It is not so much the invocation of “the Law of Nature” that rings false, because contemporary authors frequently employed natural law to support paternal authority. For example, Richard Hooker, in the first book of...

  7. The Fourth Couple in The Taming of the Shrew
    (pp. 67-74)
    Brian Blackley

    Shakespeare frequently conveys his meaning through comparisons of adversarial or cooperative characters or pairs of characters in his plays. In comedies he aligns romantic pairs so that we may see both their wisdom and folly, in histories we see potential leaders and kings in contrast with the other “competitors” for the job, and in tragedies he arranges characters of vice and virtue in parallel so that both qualities are enhanced and more visible. InThe Taming of the Shrew, Shakespeare affords us three couples, typically seen in comparison and in communication with the others: Kate and Petruchio, Bianca and Lucentio,...

  8. “This Senior-Junior, Giant-Dwarf Dan Cupid”: Generations of Eros in Shakespeare’s Love’s Labour’s Lost
    (pp. 75-84)
    Ruth Stevenson

    In spite of Archibald MacLeish’s dictum that “A poem should not mean / But be,”¹ the readers of Shakespeare’s poem-plays do expect to understand what is, in fact, going on in a given text, “to know,” as the King says, “what else we should not know.”² Such knowledge about the “meaning” (as well as “being,” both inextricable) of Shakespeare’sLove’s Labour’s Lost, particularly its character and plot development, has been elusive for many readers and audiences of the drama. H. R. Woudhuysen, whose Arden edition I am using, complains that the cast includes “fantastic and strange figures whose language is...

  9. “Chaucer (of all admired) the story gives”: Shakespeare, Medieval Narrative, and Generic Innovation
    (pp. 85-110)
    Edward Gieskes

    I am interested in the relation of Chaucerian narrative to what appear to be innovations in Shakespeare’s dramaturgy after the turn of the century. My interest is thus less in verbal influences or direct debts of theme or matter than in structural and narratological elements that Shakespeare may have adapted in producing plays likeTroilus and Cressida, Pericles,andTwo Noble Kinsmen. Following Bakhtin’s suggestion that utterances (as works) are responsive to each other, I intend to investigate the ways Shakespeare’s post-1600 plays react to medieval antecedents as they experiment with alternative principles of construction. My intention is not to...

  10. “A Queen, a Woman, and a Victor”: The Rhetoric of Colonization in Defense of Queen Isabel in Elizabeth Cary’s The History of the Life, Reign, and Death of Edward II
    (pp. 111-122)
    Katherine Pilhuj

    InThe History of the Life, Reign, and Death of Edward II, author Elizabeth Cary follows the example of Christopher Marlowe in creating a sympathetic portrayal of the woman who was referred to as the “she-wolf of France.”¹ Like Marlowe, Cary would be drawn to the story of Edward II only to have her version also eventually devote as much if not more attention to the actions and character of his wife. Cary’s dramatic account of Isabel’s invasion of England creates justification and sympathy for Isabel by constructing the French queen’s identity around the ideologies of geography, the body, and...

  11. Redeeming Love—Herbert’s Lyric Regeneration
    (pp. 123-132)
    Christopher Hodgkins

    At the end of the first decade of the twenty-first century, it should no longer come as a shock to hear that George Herbert—poet, politician, parson, and yes, married man—knew a little something about sex, and that it shows in his poetry. “I know the wayes of Pleasure,” Herbert writes in “The Pearl,”

    the sweet strains,

    The lullings and the relishes of it;

    The propositions of hot blood and brains;

    What mirth and musick mean; what love and wit

    Have done these twentie hundred yeares, and more:

    I know the projects of unbridled store:

    My stuffe is flesh,...

  12. Back Matter
    (pp. 133-133)