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The Historical Renaissance

New Essays on Tudor and Stuart Literature and Culture

The Historical Renaissance both exemplifies and examines the most influential current in contemporary studies of the English Renaissance: the effort to analyze the interplay between literature, history, and politics. The broad and varied manifestations of that effort are reflected in the scope of this collection. Rather than merely providing a sampler of any single critical movement, The Historical Renaissance represents the range of ways scholars and critics are fusing what many would once have distinguished as "literary" and "historical" concerns

The volume includes studies of mid-Tudor culture as well as of Elizabethan and Stuart periods.
The scope of the collection is also manifest in its list of contributors. They include historians and literary critics, and their work spans he spectrum from more traditional methods to those characteristic of what has been termed "New Historicism."One aim of the book is to investigate the apparent division between these older and more current approaches. Heather Dubrow and Richard Strier evaluate the contemporary interest in historical studies of the Renaissance, relating it to previous developments in the field, surveying its achievements and limitations, and suggesting new directions for future work.

388 pages | 6 x 9 | © 1988

History: British and Irish History

Literature and Literary Criticism: British and Irish Literature

Table of Contents


Introduction: Historical Renaissance
Heather Dubrow and Richard Strier

Part I: The Mid-Tudor Scene

A Tudor Queen Finds Voice: Katherine Parr’s Lamentation of a Sinner
Janel Muller

Ideas of Resistance before Elizabeth
Donald R. Kelly

Part 2: Shakespeare, Politics, and History

Descanting on Deformity: Richard III and the Shape of History
Marjorie Garber

Faithful Servants: Shakespeare’s Praise of Disobedience
Richard Strier

and the Unease of Topicality
Leah S. Marcus

Part 3: Poets, Courtiers, and the Monarchy

Sidney and his Queen
Maureen Quilligan

"The Sun in Water": Donne’s Somerset Epithalamium and the Poetics of Patronage
Heather Dubrow

Law and Ideology: The Civil Law and Theories of Absolutism in Elizabethan and Jacobean England
Brian P. Levack

"Subject to Ev’ry Mounters Bended Knee": Herbert and Authority
Michael C. Schoenfeldt

Part 4: Humanism and Its Discontents

Barbarous Tongues: The Ideology of Poetic Form in Renaissance England
Richard Helgerson

Sir Philip Sidney and the Uses of History
Arthur F. Kinney

Spenser, Bacon, and the Myth of Power
Clark Hulse

From Matron to Monster: Tudor-Stuart London and the Languages of Urban Description
Lawrence Manley

Notes on Contributors

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