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Chaucer, Spenser and Luke Shepherd’s ‘New Poet’

, committed ‘to a humanist tradition of public service’, by drawing on the desire of, for example, John Leland, ‘to recover a native literary tradition’. 51 Old Chaucer had been made new by the renovating ardour of Protestant reform, and as his heir, the ‘new Poete’ represented the epitome of vernacular Protestant Englishness. In addition to a newly created Protestant identity, or humanist educative programme, though, ‘novelty’ and its cognates as readily connoted an opposing set of ideas. The sixteenth-century sees the emergence

in Rereading Chaucer and Spenser
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the categories of both sex and gender. No longer ‘a woman’, she is also no longer subject to ‘affections’ stereotyped and construed as feminine. In this brief, satirical assertion, Boccaccio encapsulates the twin concerns of this volume: the shifts in social, professional, and personal identity that accompanied changes in religious affiliation, and the ways in which those changes were not simply

in Conversions
Robert Lepage’s Coriolan

because their bodies were ‘suture[d]’ to those of their characters (Steen and Werry 146); when their faces were invisible, their bodies were read as being decoupled from character, as being part of the apparatus of theatre and therefore less than human. Yet, if such response decontextualized Coriolan by limiting its identity to a mere contest between traditional transatlantic modes of Shakespearean

in Coriolanus
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dynamic. 1 Walter Benjamin and Theodor Adorno consider the writing which never fits an onwards-moving chronology; that which, contesting ways of writing history, does not even enter the dialectic of victor and vanquished. ‘Waste products’ and ‘blind spots’, the material that Adorno calls anachronistic but not obsolete is a reminder of what Benjamin is

in On anachronism
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which have been the objects of critical attention has considerably expanded and raised important questions about canonicity. These developments are reflected in the diverse range of plays and authors our contributors find of interest, producing original critical readings of individual plays which show how interventions in these sub-genres can be mapped onto debates surrounding numerous important issues, including national identity, the nature of divine authority, early modern youth culture, gender and ethics, as well as questions relating to sovereignty and political

in The genres of Renaissance tragedy
Shakespeare’s refurbishment of Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde

– oscillates between the lovers’ fragile utopia, and those ‘represented, contested, and reversed sorts of places that are outside all places, although they are actually localizable’, places that Foucault labels ‘heterotopias’. It is to these heterotopias that move between contingent situations that the play, as well as feeding off the instability of the characters’ identities, seems to be appealing. 30 From

in Love, history and emotion in Chaucer and Shakespeare
Gender and conversion in the early modern Mediterranean

medieval eras, the Pauline paradigm of conversion as a ‘totalizing enterprise’, a ‘process of changing a sense of root reality’, a ‘radical reorganization’ of ‘identity, imagination, and consciousness’, has been enshrined in the Christian world. 14 True conversion, when it occurred, was interior and initiated a ‘mutation of the heart’. 15 Indeed, this

in Conversions
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as easily be used for oppressive as for egalitarian political purposes: In South Africa the language of cultural identity, the ideology of cultural destiny, supported a hideous tyranny. Immigrants to the West might also be troubled by the exhortation to cherish and build upon their differences, when they

in Cultural value in twenty-first-century England
Shakespeare and Scott

At the first Annual Dinner of the Edinburgh Theatrical Fund on 23 February 1827, Sir Walter Scott finally disclosed his identity as the author of Waverley : I am willing, however, to plead guilty ... Like another Scottish criminal of more consequence, one Macbeth, ‘I am afraid to think

in Shakespeare and Scotland

, Collinson did not explore extensively what he had implied was a creative side-effect of image-breaking. Since Collinson’s work, a number of studies have revisited the contested meaning of iconoclasm in ways that are useful for my interest in drama as a part of a visual culture in ‘process of cultural transformation’. 49 In an important collection of essays on iconoclasm, many of

in Making and unmaking in early modern English drama