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This book traces the progress of Renaissance romance from a genre addressed to women as readers to a genre written by women. Exploring this crucial transitional period, Helen Hackett examines the work of a diverse range of writers from Lyly, Rich and Greene to Sidney, Spenser and Shakespeare. Her book culminates in an analysis of Lady Mary Wroth's Urania (1621), the first romance written by a woman, and considers the developing representation of female heroism and selfhood, especially the adaptation of saintly roles to secular and even erotic purposes.Read more
- Wide-ranging account focused on the development of Renaissance romance in relation to women as readers and writers
- Encompasses the work of Sidney, Spenser and Shakespeare; provides analysis of the first romance written by a woman, Wroth's Urania
- Topical theme - interest in women as writers in early modern England is considerable and growing (complements Ilona Bell's book)
Reviews & endorsements
"Provocative and lively.... Like any ambitious study, Hackett's book intriduces as many new questions into the critical arena as it answers, but in doing so, it takes a timely step that ought to invite more interest in this particular aspect of Renaissance romance." Sidney JournalSee more reviews
"Hackett's book represents an important intervention in the study of Renaissance romances precisely because she offers the most comprehensive, clear and succinct deconstruction of such misconceptions, as well as providing useful paradigms for alternative ways of reading the Renaissance romance...Hackett's argument is strong, clear and convincing." The Spenser Review
"Hackett makes her way deftly and perceptively through many texts and many issues, since "women" in her title refers to female characters, to female readers real and imagined, and to female authors." Studies in English Literature 1500-1900.
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- Date Published: November 2006
- format: Paperback
- isbn: 9780521031547
- length: 244 pages
- dimensions: 228 x 152 x 15 mm
- weight: 0.313kg
- availability: Available
Table of Contents
List of abbreviations and a note on the text
1. The readership of Renaissance romance
2. Renaissance romance and modern romance
3. Novellas of the 1560s and 1570s
4. Spanish and Portuguese romances
5. Fictions addressed to women by Lyly, Rich and Greene
6. The Arcadia: readership and authorship
7. The Arcadia: heroines
8. The Faerie Queene
9. Shakespeare's romance sources
10. Lady Mary Wroth's Urania
Epilogue: the later seventeenth century
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