Spenser Studies: A Renaissance Poetry Annual.Both the newest volume of the Renaissance Poetry Annual and the Textual Companion are useful tools for Spenserians. The computerized Spenser aid, the Textual Companion, is contained in one 3.5[inches] DD disk, and it ingeniously translates the textual characteristics of the 1590 Faerie Queene Faerie Queene
allegorical epic poem by Edmund Spenser. [Br. Lit.: Faerie Queene]
See : Epic
Faerie Queene (Gloriana)
gives a champion to people in trouble. [Br. Lit.: The Faerie Queene]
See : Salvation , into a medium that allows one instantly to compare spelling variants, for instance, or to track misprints, revisions and corrections between the 1590 and 1596 versions. The Companion is designed to supplement The Comprehensive Concordance concordance /con·cor·dance/ (-kord´ins) in genetics, the occurrence of a given trait in both members of a twin pair.concor´dant
n. to The Faerie Queene, 1590 (Kenyusha, 1990); the computer files contain a complete bibliographical description of the first edition of Books I-III, a statistical comparison of the first and second (1596) editions, a list of lines with variants, a list of substantive changes, including misprints, a list of spelling transmission from 1590 to 1596, a study of reappearing types, and a cross reference of the spelling variants in the 1590 edition. The compression software, which is included on the disk, allows the data to be installed directly onto a hard drive (where it takes up almost 4 megabytes); the files are then readable by any word processing word processing, use of a computer program or a dedicated hardware and software package to write, edit, format, and print a document. Text is most commonly entered using a keyboard similar to a typewriter's, although handwritten input (see pen-based computer) and software.
This kind of tool is helpful for textual and bibliographical studies and manifestly forms the basis for some of the critical judgments that Spenserians make about the relationship between the two editions of The Faerie Queene, and about Spenser as - among other things - editor of his own texts and manipulator of language and poetic personae. These concerns are evident in some of the eleven essays that make up Spenser Studies, Volume 10, for example, Paula Blank's essay on language in the Shepheardes Calender CALENDER. An almanac. Julius Caesar ordained that the Roman year should consist of 365 days, except every fourth year, which should contain 366, the additional day to be reckoned by counting the twenty-fourth day of February (which was the 6th of the calends of March) twice. . Blank argues that Spenser included elements of northern English Northern English is a group of dialects of the English language. It includes Northumbrian, which is more similar in some respects to Scots. Among the other dialects are Cumbrian, Tyke (Yorkshire dialect) and Scouse. dialect in order to enhance the sense of the foreignness of the text and to present himself as an outsider, a position that is then endowed with poetic power. The view of Spenser as a canny manipulator of audience and poetic voice is shared by Wayne Erickson in his essay on the Letter to Ralegh. One of the most polemical and interesting in the collection, the essay reads the Letter not as a key to understanding The Faerie Queene, but as a web of social gestures that placate, flatter, and preempt pre·empt or pre-empt
v. pre·empt·ed, pre·empt·ing, pre·empts
1. To appropriate, seize, or take for oneself before others. See Synonyms at appropriate.
a. criticism, especially in relation to the Queen and the court. While not New Historicist in its procedures, the essay does engage with New Historicism New Historicism is an approach to literary criticism and literary theory based on the premise that a literary work should be considered a product of the time, place, and circumstances of its composition rather than as an isolated creation. , especially with Stephen Greenblatt's notion of self-fashioning. The attention to self-fashioning and subjectivity is the only recurrent idea from recent criticism to inform the volume as a whole. Although the essays are scholarly, informative, and contribute their erudition er·u·di·tion
Deep, extensive learning. See Synonyms at knowledge.
Erudition of editors—Hare.
Noun 1. to our fuller understanding of Renaissance literature, the collection as a whole is curiously timeless, abstracted from recent debates and sequestered se·ques·ter
v. se·ques·tered, se·ques·ter·ing, se·ques·ters
1. To cause to withdraw into seclusion.
2. To remove or set apart; segregate. See Synonyms at isolate.
3. from theoretical storms.
This description does not hold true for the first and last essays in the volume, however. A. Kent Hieatt opens the collection with a piece designed to rectify two prevalent and, according to Hieatt, misguided assumptions. Both ideas concern the relationship between the Middle Ages and the Renaissance; in the first, most recently exemplified by Thomas Greene's The Light in Troy, the Renaissance had a rich and tragic sense of the past, whereas the Middle Ages is characterized as lacking a sense of history. The second, related notion, which has become a major topic of critical controversy, claims that the Renaissance witnessed the birth of individual consciousness, which radically distinguished it from a medieval corporate self that supposedly lacked an awareness of individuality. For his passionately argued rebuttal rebuttal n. evidence introduced to counter, disprove or contradict the opposition's evidence or a presumption, or responsive legal argument. of this view, Hieatt targets Stephen Greenblatt's Renaissance Self-Fashioning. While he uses his considerable erudition and his ironic wit to demonstrate the wrong-headedness of the idea, the essay is marred at times by his deployment of knowledge as an absolute and as a weapon, by his defensiveness about his own historical situation ("someone of my generation" ), and by his invocation of a coterie audience (the reiterated "you and I"), whose agreement he takes as a given.
The collection concludes with an impressive feminist and Marxist piece by Elizabeth Fowler. In her study of Skelton's "The Tunnyng of Elynour Rummynge," she addresses the commodification Commodification (or commoditization) is the transformation of what is normally a non-commodity into a commodity, or, in other words, to assign value. As the word commodity has distinct meanings in business and in Marxist theory, commodification of female sexuality and the overwhelmingly economic argument of the poem. She claims that Skelton sought to dismantle medieval personification personification, figure of speech in which inanimate objects or abstract ideas are endowed with human qualities, e.g., allegorical morality plays where characters include Good Deeds, Beauty, and Death. allegory through his experimentation with the representation of person; his liberation of voice from its embodiment in conventional, personified form shows the "violent, gendered" (269) nature of social agency. Fowler's essay thus seems to put into eloquent practice what Hieatt's piece preaches: she sketches a complex continuum of representations of poetic selves that moves from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance. In this line, Skelton holds a crucial place, one to which Spenser is heir. The essays in Spenser Studies, while preserving many of the conventional strategies (and pieties) of Renaissance criticism, nevertheless engage either obliquely or directly with some recent critical trends, displaying in the process both how much remains constant and the emerging new shapes of interpretation.
Elizabeth D. Harvey UNIVERSITY OF WESTERN ONTARIO Western is one of Canada's leading universities, ranked #1 in the Globe and Mail University Report Card 2005 for overall quality of education. It ranked #3 among medical-doctoral level universities according to Maclean's Magazine 2005 University Rankings.