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The Limits of Eroticism in Post-Petrarchan Narrative
Conditional Pleasure from Spenser to Marvell

$51.95 (C)

Part of Cambridge Studies in Renaissance Literature and Culture

  • Date Published: December 2006
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521034692

$ 51.95 (C)

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About the Authors
  • The poet Petrarch imagined that the hopeless but pure love of a woman could lead a man to heaven. In sixteenth-century England Edmund Spenser wrote poetry in the petrarchan tradition while heightening its dilemmas--flirting with a very different kind of feminine image. Dorothy Stephens shows that this flirtation emerges only in conditional language and situations, and that the eroticism the reader feels often belies a narrator's insistence that it is illusory. She goes on to look at responses to Spenser's eroticism among male and female writers in the seventeenth century.

    • Exciting readings of sixteenth- and seventeenth-century English poetry and prose
    • Illuminating theories of post-Petrarchan eroticism
    • Revealing insights into gender relations in Renaissance England
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "Stephens handles Spenser's famously intricate language with precision and uncommon insight." Choice

    "The book is the best and most thorough to date to explore a trope that has recently received a good bit of attention: the feminized imaginative faculty." Theresa M. Krier, Modern Philology

    "...Stephens' readings of the Cavendish/Brackley and Marvell texts are characteristically probing, once again demonstrating the exceptional critical acumen that is the hallmark of this fine study." Renaissance Quarterly

    " and rewarding..." Spenser Newsletter

    "Waht the superficial glance misses...this book delights to reveal." Journal of English and Germanic Philology

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    Product details

    • Date Published: December 2006
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521034692
    • length: 264 pages
    • dimensions: 228 x 151 x 15 mm
    • weight: 0.394kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. Spenser:
    1. Into other arms: Amoret's evasion
    2. 'Newes of devils': feminine sprights in masculine minds
    3. Monstrous intimacy and arrested developments
    4. Narrative flirtations
    Part II. Seventeenth-Century Refigurations:
    5. 'Who can those vast imaginations feed?': The Concealed Fancies and the price of hunger
    6. Caught in the act at Nun Appleton
    Works cited

  • Author

    Dorothy Stephens, University of Arkansas

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