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Figures of comparison and repetition in Spenser’s Cantos of Mutabilitie and Donne’s Anniversaries

worsening clearly prefigures the syncritic thought and agonistic tone shaping the Cantos , its effect on Spenser’s ‘continued Allegory, or darke conceit’ is less clear. In other words, we should not overvalue Mutabilitie as a daemon of disorder, especially given how the vicious inconstancy of various characters in earlier books (e.g., Duessa, Busirane) is balanced by other allegorical figures, whose virtuous constancy may retain some synchronic efficacy as the sceptical materialism of the Cantos is pondered. Numerous episodes and characters in the first six books

in Spenser and Donne
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Spenser, Donne, and the philosophic poem

the philosophic stakes of traversing the dissected world in order to reach beyond it. This, as Ramie Targoff has powerfully argued, is in fact the great emotional challenge of the Second Anniversary – the speaker’s attempt to persuade the soul to leave behind the body and travel towards the afterlife – but it is one that also reinforces Donne’s materialism, his desire to cement the connection between body and soul and cancel out the easy philosophic binaries that suggest such separation is effortless. As both Spenser’s Fowre Hymnes and

in Spenser and Donne

Christian Platonic hierarchy shapes Spenser’s epic: a hierarchic family triad, three stages of fall and of recovery. Spenser radically revises this allegory, blaming man, whom woman lovingly seeks to cure. Books 3-5 show Britomart’s chaste power defeating all males, freeing woman from mastery and self-induced suffering. The intellective allegory of books 1 and 2 reform higher reason, then lower reason, each in tripartite form: a triadic family, triple temptings, three-phase training of the spiritual and then natural bodies, ending with a triadic Eden. The passional allegory of books 3 and 4 is again transcendent, then immanent. Britomart brings female ascendancy by chaste skill with arms and providential goals. She unfolds in three heroic Graces (Florimell, Belphoebe, Amoret). In these passional books the male counterparts (Artegall, Marinell, Timias, Scudamour) are paralyzed; virtuous reunion comes by female prowess and endurance, aided by mothers and female deities. A female theology rests on virginity and marriage, immaculate conception, Trinitarian identity, epiphanic unveilings, female endurance of a Passion. The sensate allegory of books 5 and 6 subject even Gloriana/Mercilla and Arthur to confusing materialism. Does the ontological ‘dilation’ of books 1-6 (narrowing images of Duessa, Timias, and satyrs-salvages) show despondency about Irish terrors, or prepare for reversal in books 7-12?

in Renaissance psychologies
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fundamentally implausible, as are attempts to reduce consciousness to physiology. 14 Nagel is unpersuaded that physicalism or materialism offers an all-encompassing account of human experience. Likewise, in the Renaissance, as this collection demonstrates, humoralism was not the only system available for understanding human emotion. 15 Other discourses – religious, aesthetic

in The Renaissance of emotion
Christian and Jewish eudaimonism in The Merchant of Venice

moral philosophy than Galenic physiology. 8 And yet despite his lack of medical training, Perrott adopts many of the same strategies of emo tional self-management that scholars typically cite in discussions of Galenic materialism, directing them towards more explicitly philosophical ends. In his treatise, Perrott focuses on self-understanding and describes it as a basic precondition for the

in The Renaissance of emotion
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Behind the screen

. 2 Wotton, The Elements of Architecture , p. 4. 3 Harris, Untimely Matter , pp. 16–20. 4 See Jonathan Dollimore, ‘Introduction: Shakespeare, Cultural Materialism and New Historicism’, in

in Making and unmaking in early modern English drama
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Forms of translation in the work of Richard Hakluyt

theoretical commitments to materialism in early modern studies. Although I experience moments of impatience with some scholarship that appears under the materialist rubric, it also seems to me that for good reasons historicist criticism will always have to answer to a theory of materialism, and I believe that the category of ‘form,’ perhaps unexpectedly, will offer an important

in Formal matters
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between the body and the soul’. Through a careful examination of a range of European writings on the subject of melancholy, Gowland emphasises the complexity of the relationship between the material and immaterial self and notes that while ‘occasionally these connections were suggestive of a radical materialism … the two domains [of body and soul] never collapsed into each other’. 16 Such work has drawn

in The Renaissance of emotion
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Remapping early modern literature

Ann Baynes Coiro and Thomas Fulton note, ‘the term “historicism” is capacious, and many varieties of historicist work are now flourishing’. 48 At the root of this ‘turn’, however, are American New Historicism and its British cognate Cultural Materialism, which sought to challenge both ‘the dominant historical scholarship of the past (in Renaissance Studies) and the formalist criticism that partially displaced this scholarship after World War Two’. 49 Whereas formalist critics had, it was said, insisted that literary works of art were

in Aesthetics of contingency
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A context for The Faerie Queene

can illuminate many of the episodes and characters of the poem. Spenserians have always produced biographical, textual, prosodic, and other historically-based works. In the past decades, many studies that emphasize deconstructive, gender, and psychoanalytic approaches have also appeared. Valuable and insightful as they are, such studies employ categories that were not part of the mental equipment available to original readers of The Faerie Queene and cannot bring us closer to the original readers’ experience. The New Historicism and Cultural Materialism 1 “A Letter

in Spenserian allegory and Elizabethan biblical exegesis