Catalogue


Elizabethan women and the poetry of courtship /
Ilona Bell.
imprint
Cambridge ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 1998.
description
xiv, 262 p. : ill (some col.), ports.
ISBN
052163007X (hardback)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
author
imprint
Cambridge ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 1998.
isbn
052163007X (hardback)
catalogue key
2557299
 
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1999-10-01:
Bell's impressive book takes on one of the mandarin assumptions of high modernism, especially of T.S. Eliot, that the Elizabethan and metaphysical lyric is "the voice of the poet speaking to himself or nobody." Bell argues that most Elizabethan love poetry is exactly what it appears to be, a poetry of courtship; to ignore this is to refuse to read the lyric as Elizabethans almost certainly did--as mistresses, voyeurs, "scavengers and consumers" reconstructing and reusing the poems to their own purposes and as critics of both poetry and courtship. Moreover, as she suggests, modernism's insistence on the lyric uncontaminated by biography or circumstance erases the feminine, especially the role of "the private female lyric audience." Examining this audience, she provides fresh readings of some of the canonical writings, notably Daniel's Delia and Spenser's Amoretti, plus an excellent chapter on Mary Sidney, Elizabeth I, and Isabella Whitney. Bell's approach is bound to be influential among scholars, but the book deserves an audience beyond specialists. The chapter "The Practice of Elizabethan Courtship" contains probably the finest brief overview of marriage and the family this reviewer has read; it alone makes this book indispensable for upper-division undergraduate libraries as well as for research collections. P. Cullen CUNY Graduate Center and College of Staten Island
Reviews
Review Quotes
"Bell's...argument that amatory poetry is dialogue rather than monologue, that it is at least the representation of and often the product of actual relationship, provides an excellent basis for a renewed exploration of its subject." Journal of English and Germanic Philology
"I applaud Bell's attempt to hear women's voices amid the conversation of men." Modern Philology
"Indispensible for upper-division undergraduate libraries as well as for research collections."Choice
"Indispensible for upper-division undergraduate libraries as well as for research collections." Choice
"It offers a useful way to locate women's voices in places they sometimes appear to be."Renaissance Quarterly
"It offers a useful way to locate women's voices in places they sometimes appear to be." Renaissance Quarterly
"This book performs an important service by returning late twentieth century scholars to a more fundamental way of reading courtly poetry." Albion
"With a book so thoroughly researched, so brilliantly written-especially with her clever and probing analyses of individual poems-the reader is tempted to say that Bell has every reason to suppose that what she calls Renaissance 'pseudo-Petrarchan' poems...I think that the real importance of her book for Spenserians-its clarity of purpose, its richness of story, its exuberant style-is that it uses the early modern resistant female reader and writer to return us to the poems themselves." The Spenser Review
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, October 1999
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Summaries
Bowker Data Service Summary
Ilona Bell's study explores the tendency of Elizabethan love poems not only to represent an amorous thought, but to conduct the courtship itself. The focus is on love poetry, amorous courtship, and Elizabethan male-female relationships.
Description for Bookstore
During Elizabeth I's reign, love poetry acquired a popularity and brilliance unparalleled in English literary history. Ilona Bell shows how the tropes and rhetoric of love poetry were used to court Elizabethan women (at court, in the great houses, and in society at large) and how the women responded to being wooed, in prose, poetry and speech. Juxtaposing canonical male poets and recently discovered women writers, she investigates texts addressed to, written by, read, or heard by Elizabethan women, and charts the beginnings of a female lyric tradition.
Description for Bookstore
During Elizabeth I's reign, love poetry acquired a popularity and brilliance unparalleled in English literary history. Showing how love poetry was used to court Elizabethan women, Bell examines a range of texts by male poets and recently discovered women writers, and charts the beginnings of a female lyric tradition.
Description for Bookstore
During Elizabeth I's reign, love poetry acquired a popularity and brilliance unparalleled in English literary history. Showing how love poetry was used to court Elizabethan women, Bell examines a range of texts by male poets and women writers, and charts the beginnings of a female lyric tradition.
Description for Bookstore
During Elizabeth I's reign, love poetry acquired a popularity and brilliance unparalleled in English literary history. Showing how love poetry was used to court Elizabethan women, in this 1999 book Bell examines a range of texts by male poets and women writers, and charts the beginnings of a female lyric tradition.
Main Description
This 1999 book offers an original study of lyric form and social custom in the Elizabethan age. Ilona Bell explores the tendency of Elizabethan love poems not only to represent an amorous thought, but to conduct the courtship itself. Where studies have focused on courtiership, patronage and preferment at court, her focus is on love poetry, amorous courtship, and relations between Elizabethan men and women. The book examines the ways in which the tropes and rhetoric of love poetry were used to court Elizabethan women (not only at court and in the great houses, but in society at large) and how the women responded to being wooed, in prose, poetry and speech. Bringing together canonical male poets and women writers, Ilona Bell investigates a range of texts addressed to, written by, read, heard or transformed by Elizabethan women, and charts the beginnings of a female lyric tradition.
Main Description
This book offers an original study of lyric form and social custom in the Elizabethan age. Ilona Bell explores the tendency of Elizabethan love poems not only to represent an amorous thought, but to conduct the courtship itself. Where recent studies have focused on courtiership, patronage and preferment at court, her focus is on love poetry, amorous courtship, and relations between Elizabethan men and women. The book examines the ways in which the tropes and rhetoric of love poetry were used to court Elizabethan women (not only at court and in the great houses, but in society at large) and how the women responded to being wooed, in prose, poetry and speech. Bringing together canonical male poets and recently discovered women writers, Ilona Bell investigates a range of texts addressed to, written by, read, heard or transformed by Elizabethan women, and charts the beginnings of a female lyric tradition.
Main Description
This book offers an original study of lyric form and social custom in the Elizabethan age. Ilona Bell explores the tendency of Elizabethan love poems not only to represent an amorous thought, but to conduct the courtship itself. Where studies have focused on courtiership, patronage and preferment at court, her focus is on love poetry, amorous courtship, and relations between Elizabethan men and women. The book examines the ways in which the tropes and rhetoric of love poetry were used to court Elizabethan women (not only at court and in the great houses, but in society at large) and how the women responded to being wooed, in prose, poetry and speech. Bringing together canonical male poets and women writers, Ilona Bell investigates a range of texts addressed to, written by, read, heard or transformed by Elizabethan women, and charts the beginnings of a female lyric tradition.
Table of Contents
An Introduction to Elizabethan courtship
An Elizabethan poetics of courtship
The practice of Elizabethan courtship
The lyric dialogue of Elizabethan courtship
Anne Vavasour and Henry Lee
A female lyric tradition
Daniel's lyric dialogue of courtship
Spenser's Amoretti
Epilogue
Bibliography
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

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