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By Bart Van Es

This publication offers an authoritative consultant to discuss on Elizabethan England's poet laureate. It covers key themes and gives histories for all the fundamental texts. a few of present day such a lot fashionable Spenser students provide debts of debates at the poet, from the Renaissance to the current day. crucial for these generating new examine on Spenser.

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Extra resources for A Critical Companion to Spenser Studies

Sample text

S “Generall Argument”; an anonymous woodcut and an “Argument” by E. K. preceding each eclogue; and, closing each eclolgue, Immerito’s emblem and E. ’s detailed gloss. Although the name of Edmund Spenser nowhere appears, the effect of his book is paradoxical: it uses anonymity to draw attention to the biographical fiction of “the Authour[’s] selfe” (133). Thus, in his “Epistle” E. K. reports that the “Author” uses “Colin” to “shadow” himself (133–4). Repeatedly, the book draws attention to its biographical and historical origins, from Colin’s difficulties with the shepherdess Rosalind, “a feigned name,” says E.

Spenser”: Lo I the man, whose Muse whilome did maske, As time her taught, in lowly Shephards weeds, Am now enforst a farre vnfitter taske, For trumpets sterne to chaunge mine Oaten reeds: And sing of Knights and Ladies gentle deeds. 1–5) Here Spenser identifies himself as the author of The Shepheardes Calender and presents his turn from Virgilian pastoral to Virgilian epic, cut along the romance lines of Ariosto’s Orlando Furioso (as “Knights and Ladies” indicates; see Hamilton 2001, 29). As Robert Durling (1965) and Jerome S.

Scholars have become interested not simply in the way in which a poet was understood in his or her ‘own time’ but also in the manner subsequent generations made sense of that work. As Elizabeth Jane Bellamy points out at the conclusion of her chapter in this book, for example, recent studies come to look at the way in which women poets such as Wroth and Lanyer responded to Spenser’s work. There seems no reason why later responses should not, equally, reveal productive points of connection. Literature exists in history not just at a particular contextual moment, but always, ongoingly, being re-read and thereby changed.

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