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A New Companion to English Renaissance Literature and Culture

ISBN: 978-1-4051-8762-6
1264 pages
May 2010, Wiley-Blackwell
A New Companion to English Renaissance Literature and Culture (140518762X) cover image


In this revised and greatly expanded edition of the Companion, 80 scholars come together to offer an original and far-reaching assessment of English Renaissance literature and culture.
  • A new edition of the best-selling Companion to English Renaissance Literature, revised and updated, with  22 new essays and 19 new illustrations
  • Contributions from some 80 scholars including Judith H. Anderson, Patrick Collinson, Alison Findlay, Germaine Greer, Malcolm Jones, Arthur Kinney, James Knowles, Arthur Marotti, Robert Miola and Greg Walker
  • Unrivalled in scope and its exploration of unfamiliar literary and cultural territories the Companion offers new readings of both ‘literary’ and ‘non-literary’ texts
  • Features essays discussing material culture, sectarian writing, the history of the body, theatre both in and outside the playhouses, law, gardens, and ecology in early modern England
  • Orientates the beginning student, while providing advanced students  and faculty with new directions for their research
  • All of the essays from the first edition, along with the recommendations for further reading, have been reworked or updated
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Table of Contents


List of Illustrations xi

Acknowledgements xiii

Contributors xv

Asterisked items are essays that offer focused readings of particular texts

1 Introduction 1
Michael Hattaway

Part One: Contexts, Readings, and Perspectives c.1500–c.1650 13

2 The English Language of the Early Modern Period 15
Arja Nurmi

3 Literacy and Education 27
Jean R. Brink

4 Rhetoric 38
Gavin Alexander

5 History 55
Patrick Collinson

6 Metaphor and Culture in Renaissance England 74
Judith H. Anderson

7 Early Tudor Humanism 91
Mary Thomas Crane

8 Platonism, Stoicism, Scepticism, and Classical Imitation 106
Sarah Hutton

9 Translation 120
Liz Oakley-Brown

10 Mythology 134
Jane Kingsley-Smith

11 Scientific Writing 150
David Colclough

12 Publication: Print and Manuscript 160
Michelle O’Callaghan

13 Early Modern Handwriting 177
Grace Ioppolo

14 The Manuscript Transmission of Poetry 190
Arthur F. Marotti

15 Poets, Friends, and Patrons: Donne and his Circle; Ben and his Tribe 221
Robin Robbins

16 Law: Poetry and Jurisdiction 248
Bradin Cormack

17 *Spenser’s Faerie Queene, Book 5: Poetry, Politics, and Justice 263
Judith H. Anderson

18 *‘Law Makes the King’: Richard Hooker on Law and Princely Rule 274
Torrance Kirby

19 Donne, Milton, and the Two Traditions of Religious Liberty 289
Feisal G. Mohamed

20 Court and Coterie Culture 304
Curtis Perry

21 *Courtship and Counsel: John Lyly’s Campaspe 320
Greg Walker

22 *Bacon’s ‘Of Simulation and Dissimulation’ 329
Martin Dzelzainis

23 The Literature of the Metropolis 337
John A. Twyning

24 *Tales of the City: The Plays of Ben Jonson and Thomas Middleton 352
Peter J. Smith

25 ‘An Emblem of Themselves’: Early Renaissance Country House Poetry 367
Nicole Pohl

26 Literary Gardens, from More to Marvell 379
Hester Lees-Jeffries

27 English Reformations 396
Patrick Collinson

28 *Translations of the Bible 419
Gerald Hammond

29 *Lancelot Andrewes’ Good Friday 1604 Sermon 430
Richard Harries

30 Theological Writings and Religious Polemic 438
Donna B. Hamilton

31 Catholic Writings 449
Robert S. Miola

32 Sectarian Writing 464
Hilary Hinds

33 The English Broadside Print, c.1550–c.1650 478
Malcolm Jones

34 The Writing of Travel 527
Peter Womack

35 England’s Experiences of Islam 543
Stephan Schmuck

36 Reading the Body 557
Jennifer Waldron

37 Physiognomy 582
Sibylle Baumbach

38 Dreams and Dreamers 598
Carole Levin


List of Illustrations xi

Part Two: Genres and Modes 1

39 Theories of Literary Kinds 3
John Roe

40 The Position of Poetry: Making and Defending Renaissance Poetics 15
Arthur F. Kinney

41 Epic 28
Rachel Falconer

42 Playhouses, Performances, and the Role of Drama 42
Michael Hattaway

43 Continuities between ‘Medieval’ and ‘Early Modern’ Drama 60
Michael O’Connell

44 *Kyd’s The Spanish Tragedy 70
A. J. Piesse

45 Boys’ Plays 80
Edel Lamb

46 Drama of the Inns of Court 94
Alan H. Nelson and Jessica Winston

47 ‘Tied to rules of fl attery’? Court Drama and the Masque 105
James Knowles

48 Women and Drama 123
Alison Findlay

49 Political Plays 141
Stephen Longstaffe

50 Jacobean Tragedy 154
Rowland Wymer

51 Caroline Theatre 166
Roy Booth

52 *John Ford, Mary Wroth, and the Final Scene of ’Tis Pity She’s a Whore 176
Robyn Bolam

53 Local Drama and Custom 184
Thomas Pettitt

54 *The Critical Elegy 204
John Lyon

55 Allegory 214
Clara Mucci

56 Pastoral 225
Michelle O’Callaghan

57 Romance 238
Helen Moore

58 Love Poetry 249
Diana E. Henderson

59 Music and Poetry 264
David Lindley

60 *Wyatt’s ‘Who so list to hunt’ 278
Rachel Falconer

61 *The Heart of the Labyrinth: Mary Wroth’s Pamphilia to Amphilanthus 288
Robyn Bolam

62 Ovidian Erotic Poems 299
Boika Sokolova

63 *John Donne’s Nineteenth Elegy 317
Germaine Greer

64 Traditions of Complaint and Satire 326
John N. King

65 Folk Legends and Wonder Tales 341
Thomas Pettitt

66 ‘Such pretty things would soon be gone’: The Neglected Genres of Popular Verse, 1480–1650 359
Malcolm Jones

67 Religious Verse 382
Elizabeth Clarke

68 *Herbert’s ‘The Elixir’ 398
Judith Weil

69 *Conversion and Poetry in Early Modern England 407
Molly Murray

70 Prose Fiction 423
Andrew Hadfield

71 The English Renaissance Essay: Churchyard, Cornwallis, Florio’s Montaigne, and Bacon 437
John Lee

72 Diaries and Journals 447
Elizabeth Clarke

73 Letters 453
Jonathan Gibson

Part Three: Issues and Debates 461

74 Identity 463
A. J. Piesse

75 Sexuality: A Renaissance Category? 474
James Knowles

76 Was There a Renaissance Feminism? 492
Jean E. Howard

77 Drama as Text and Performance 502
Andrea Stevens

78 The Debate on Witchcraft 513
James Sharpe

79 Reconstructing the Past: History, Historicism, Histories 523
James R. Siemon

80 Race: A Renaissance Category? 535
Margo Hendricks

81 Writing the Nations 545
Nicola Royan

82 Early Modern Ecology 555
Ken Hiltner

Index of Names, Topics, and Institutions 569

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Author Information

Michael Hattaway is Professor Emeritus of English Literature at the University of Sheffield, and Professor of English at New York University in London. His principal publications include Elizabethan Popular Theatre (1982), Hamlet: The Critics Debate (1987), and Renaissance and Reformations: An Introduction to Early Modern English Literature (2005); he is the editor of As You Like It (2000) and   1–3 Henry VI for the New Cambridge Shakespeare (1990, 1991, 1993), and of A Companion to English Renaissance Literature and Culture (2000) and The Cambridge Companion to Shakespeare’s History Plays (2002).
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"As with the previous volume, each essay is the work of an accomplished scholar and is supplemented with a list of references and further reading. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty." (Choice, 1July 2011)


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