Incited minds: rethinking early modern girls.
Adolescent virgin girls were uniquely disadvantaged. Their bodies were not yet broken in by marital intercourse and opened up by regular menstruation, so they were prone to the retention of seed and blood, and to the diseases of the mind that followed. Unlike her colder, older self, this newly mature female was imagined to be excessively hot, and her body and mind reacted to this atypical heat in specific ways. When abundant seed is "over long retained in Bodies prone to lust, and full of heat," wrote Lazarus Riverius, it works like yeast in the seminal vessels, inflaming sexual desire and madness: "Vapors ascend unto the Brain, which disturb the Rational Faculty, and depose it from its throne." (2) This medically-based belief found its fictional expression in characters like the raging, greensick Jailer's Daughter in Two Noble Kinsmen, who is cured of her insanity once she has sex--one of the "pushes," perhaps, wenches are "driven to / When fifteen once has found us" (2.4.6-7). (3)
Fourteen and fifteen often do appear as dangerous ages, sexually speaking, for girls in early modern discourses. In her study of teenagers in early modern drama, Ursula Potter notes that "[i]t is rare in early modern drama to find any character given a chronological age, but the exceptions to this general rule are plays that depict teenage girls whose sexual development is central to the plot." Potter considers how such plays often tag these girls' ages early on as a cue for the audience to consider "the risky sexual behaviors commonly associated with the virginal body at puberty." (4) Such a reading does help explain seemingly out-of-character comments like that made by the kind-hearted Antigonus in The Winter's Tale about his three pre-pubescent girls, ages 11,9, and 5. Should Hermione prove false, he swears to her jealous husband Leontes that "I'll geld 'em all. Fourteen they shall not see, / To bring false generations" (2.1.149-50).
The criticism on early modern adolescent girls tends to focus on their newly mature sexual bodies. Given the early modern fixation on controlling daughters, exemplified so gruesomely by Antigonus, this work is critical to understanding the larger gender-based networks of oppression in the period. As Kate Chedgzoy asks, "If ... we focus on female children as they pass through adolescence into adult femininity, what can we learn of the complex interrelations of the politics of gender, sexuality and age in Shakespeare's texts and in the culture from which they emerged?" (5) I would add to this question, and to the vital emerging field of early modern girlhood studies that informs it, the following: If we focus on the adolescent female, what can we learn about the rich interactions between girls' brains and their early modern environments, and what can this tell us about the specific and unique cultural work early moderns imagined these minds to be doing?
Older scholarship read girls' minds as passively impressionable. In 1845, N. J. Halpin wondered, for example, at Juliet's "familiarity with thoughts and expressions not likely in any other way to have obtained entrance into the mind of an innocent and unsophisticated girl of fourteen," and attributed her remarkable speech to the bridal ceremonies and masques in which she likely had participated: "Thus might she have caught up the topics and language appropriated to this species of poetry." (6) Nearly 135 years later, Marjorie Garber would observe of Juliet's speech that, "[f]or a young woman of her age and her sheltered upbringing, this innocent forwardness is as remarkable as it is appealing." (7) What unifies these otherwise vastly different scholars is the lack of intentional invention that marks the early modern girl's mind in their--and so many other critics'--analyses, for even "innocent forwardness" implies behavior that is unplanned and impulsive. (8) Her middle ventricle, where the brain judged and assessed images and ideas, appears inactive. Her front ventricle may take in sensory experiences, and her brain may even store them in its back ventricle for future imitation, but these are relatively limited and unmastered cognitive operations.
More recent work on adolescent girls generally continues along these lines, focusing almost exclusively on the sexual and/or pathological nature of their bodies and the raging of their minds once they neared and then crossed the pubertal threshold. According to Helen King, the sixteenth century in England was one of the historical periods to "focus on the onset of menstruation as the key point of danger for women, a time when their bodies and their minds are equally in turmoil." (9) Her work on the diseases of virgins suggests that greensickness became a condition in its own right associated with post-pubertal girls at this time. Potter uses work like King's to argue that playwrights used fourteen- and fifteen-year-old girl characters as a way "to pander to a public fascination with contemporary medicine and the mysteries of the womb." (10) The recent surge of studies in popular medicine and uterine illness has leant enormous learned support to this view of what early moderns thought about the female body and brain, and, in turn, to the critics, artists, and consumers who continue to see characters like Ophelia, for example, in terms of her troubled adolescent girl's mind and her lovesick body. (11)
But when we challenge ourselves to look beyond this dominant reading of early modern girls, it becomes clear that they did not always, or even primarily, find sexual risk, shame, and madness when they saw fourteen--or when fifteen once had found them. The dramas are rife with teenage heroines who have yet to experience the "cure" or the dangers of sexual intercourse, yet who display considerable cognitive gifts. Multiple stories feature these girls using their minds in focused and inventive ways--and all three ventricles at that: the fourteen-year-old Marina, who makes herself known to her father, Pericles, "by her own most clear remembrance" (22.32), and who, as Tharsia in Twine's version, describes herself as "skilful in the liberal sciences," and able to "resolve" for the people "any manner of questions"; (12) John Marston's "quick, deviceful, strong-brain'd Dulcimel, ... too full of wit to be a wife," who celebrates her fifteenth birthday at the start of The Fawn (3.1.436-37); (13) and Miranda, age fourteen, whose memory inspires wonder in her father, and (as I will explore in the latter part of this essay) who has a "beating" mind that takes in, assesses, and transforms Prospero's art (1.2.177). Clearly there was an alternative discourse about female brain function in circulation in the early modern period, but the critical history of reading girls in terms of pathology and wandering minds has obscured it.
So, how do we find these productively brainy girls? This essay offers some possible ways in to this question by pointing to other stories about how early moderns experienced and imagined adolescent girls' minds, stories in which girls--particularly those who are marked in relation to the pubertal threshold of fourteen or fifteen--are seen to absorb, process, store, and invent in ways that, I argue, are unique to this particular stage of female development. The girls I study here are physically mature, but not married. Their minds are not yet absorbed by the demands of a household, a husband, and children, and, as such, they are free to move in unusual ways. I employ the term "girl" here fully aware of its lack of consistency in the period. As Jennifer Higginbotham's research reveals, there was no one dominant word to describe female children at this time, and "girl" could be applied to females of any age. (14) I use it here to mark a specific group of females who were not defined solely in relation to their fathers or husbands. They are neither female children nor "women," positions that each were seen to limit the female mind--in the first case because of her undeveloped brain function and, in the second, because her mental focus was expected to stay fixed on domestic responsibilities and spousal relations.
This alternative interpretive lens, I argue, allows us to rethink some of Shakespeare's girls, among others--even the "mad" Ophelia, who, as Bruce Smith's work on winks and cognitive perceptual moments suggests, certainly deserves a more nuanced consideration: "her winks, and nods, and gestures ... / ... Indeed would make one think there might be thought ..." (4.5.11-12). (15) These thoughtful, often inventive girls appear in medical texts, popular handbooks, histories, letters, plays; they are virtually everywhere once you start looking for them.
The real early modern girls who cluster around this age-specific threshold offer up rich examples of cognitive invention: the fourteen-year-old Rachel Fane who wrote masques for performances at her family's household in Apethorpe; Joan Waste, the blind Protestant martyr who, from about fourteen years of age, desired "to understand and have printed in her memory the sayings of the Holy Scriptures"; (16) the fifteen-year-old Princess Elizabeth who, in a letter she writes to her brother, King Edward, imagines her body transported to an alternate space: "my inward mind," she writes, "wisheth that the body itself were oftener in your presence." (17)
When the Jesuitess Mary Ward wrote her autobiography, she figures her fifteen-year-old self as a girl whose mind, body, and spirit work together toward one future transformative state:
When I was about fifteen years old, while living in the house of a relation of my mother, in great measure because the retirement was more to my taste, I had a religious vocation. This grace by the mercy of God has been so continuous that not for one moment since then have I had the least thought of embracing a contrary state ... I practiced much prayer, some few fasts, and some austerities, and internal and external mortifications ... I delighted in reading spiritual books, and I spent much time by day and sometimes by night in this employment.... I had during these years burning desires to be a martyr and my mind for a long time together fixed upon that happy event; the sufferings of the martyrs appeared to me delightful for attaining to so great a good, and my favourite thoughts were how? And when? (18)
The only desires that burn in Ward's fifteen-year-old girl's self are the kind that fix her mind upon the future happy event of her hoped-for martyrdom. Her thoughts, bolstered by her reading, show no sign of moving to a "contrary state."
Theorists of early modern embodiment have brought important attention to the kinds of interactive dynamics of mind, body, and surroundings that Mary Ward articulates here as she seeks retirement in her relative's home, reads day and night, and puts her body through a series of punishments and constraints, fixing her mind on her future. Their work is especially important for a study such as this one, for it offers a way to see beyond the narrative of female pathology that I am looking to read against in my larger project. (19) When we consider the embodied interactions between these post-pubertal girls' brains and their environments, even more possibilities for how early moderns thought about and experienced the female adolescent mind open up. What could these girls imagine, remember, and produce in the space of the convent, for example, or in the pastoral countryside; in the heat of Verona, or the sea air of a tropical island?
For the remainder of this essay, I will be exploring some of the interpretive spaces that reveal themselves when we consider this creative brain-work and start paying attention to the many girls who are marked (and sometimes mark themselves) in relation to this pubertal threshold. Before they were married, and obligated to think upon one husband and household, in what ways were the minds of these particular early modern girls imagined as free to think, create, and move? What could they inspire and embody? This group clearly captured the imaginations of early modern playwrights, and their teenage heroines are not always or only enacting fantasies about future husbands. They are using all three parts of their brains, often in connected ways, to actively engage and sometimes challenge their audiences. Their imaginations shape the arts in its many forms--drawing, healing, performance; their memories store up their countries' and families' pasts; they assess and judge what others would rather forget: "Where is the beauteous majesty of Denmark?" [Hamlet 4.5.21).
In the first part of this essay, I turn primarily to medical descriptions of the female body and mind as girls crossed the pubertal threshold at age fourteen or fifteen. Next, I consider the story of Dibutades's daughter, an ancient myth about the origins of the plastic arts that resurfaced and morphed in the late-sixteenth century to feature a desiring girl as the inventor of painting; finally, I focus on the beating mind of The Tempest's fourteen-year-old Miranda to explore how attention to these stories of girls' artful minds allows for a new reading of Prospero's daughter--one that shows the impact of her brain's operations on her father's mind and art.
Early modern writers often presented conflicting accounts of how male and female bodies worked. They were atypically unanimous, however, when it came to marking and describing the moment of female puberty: when a girl reached the age of fourteen or fifteen, her body began to heat up, her breasts began to swell, and she began to menstruate. "Now at the second seven yeares," wrote the popular physician Helkiah Crooke,
the heate begins to gather strength, to burst foorth as the Sunne in his brightness, and to rule in the Horizon of the body; from which heate doe proceede as necessary consequences, the largeness of the wayes and vesselles, the motions and commotions of the humours ... and finally the strength of the expelling faculty. (20)
This description of a fourteen-year-old girl's body bursting with heat presents the thermal transformation of puberty as ordered and entirely non-pathological. Crooke connects these females, not to the cold and changeable moon, but to the sun in his brightness. The heat "gather[s] strength," "rules" and produces the "strength of the expelling faulty." This model offers a significant exception, then, to the gendered rules of early modern humoral theory in which the female body and mind wallow in their cold and wet inadequacies. The expansion of the vessels, movement of the humors, and first menstrual flow are all "necessary consequences" of this increased heat. Thomas Willis, in his Practice of Physick, gives a similarly positive description of these vigorous movements of the blood girls experience "about the time of ripe age":
for as the Blood pours forth something before destinated for the brain through the spermatic Arteries to the genitals, so also it receives as a recompence, a certain ferment from those parts through the Veins, to wit, certain Particles imbued with a seminal tincture, are carried back into the bloody mass, which makes it vigorous, and inspire into it a new and lively virtue; wherefore at that time the gifts both of the Body and Mind chiefly shew themselves. (21)
Inspiration, liveliness, gifts of the body and mind: this vision of pubertal transformation decidedly challenges the conventional scholarly narrative of pathological and raging adolescence.
This increase in heat was not always viewed in positive terms, of course. Helen King argues that "the humoral model presented puberty in both sexes as a time of excess heat, and therefore of lust." (22) Lust is certainly a problem that early moderns grapple with in their discussions of the hot, post-pubertal female, and many writers (medical and otherwise) connected these bodily changes to the incitement of lustful thoughts. In his Anatomy of Melancholy, for example, Robert Burton describes how, "Generally women begin Pubescere as they call it, at 14 yeeres old, and then they begin to offer themselves, and some to rage. Leo Afer saith that in Africke a man shall scarce finde a maide at 14 yeeres old, they are so forward, and many amongst us after they come into the teenes, do not live but linger." (23) The anonymous author(s) of Aristotle's Master-Piece similarly describe how, "when they arrive to Puberty (which is usually about the Fourteenth or Fifteenth Year of their Age, according to their respective Habits and Constitutions) then their Menses, or Natural Purgations begin to flow: And the Blood, which is no longer taken to augment their Bodies, abounding, incites their Minds and Imaginations to Venery." (24)
At first blush, this heat-incited, venerous mind does not appear to be a positive development for the female. But what these writers do offer us in their depictions of these pubertal girls is a female imagination that is newly activated. And when we turn back to Crooke's section on puberty, we can see that this mind is not always imagined as unruly in its newfound movements. After describing the heat of the female body bursting like the sun, Crooke turns to the effects of the body's pubertal transformations on both male and female minds. At age fourteen, he writes, "men begin to grow hairy, to have lustfull imaginations and to change their voice; womens Pappes begin to swell and they to think upon husbands." (25) The male imagination is prone to lust over which young men appear to have little control. Fourteen-year-old females, on the other hand, are "thinking upon husbands." While we could write this description off as just one more example of the dominance of the marital narrative in determining the stages of female development, Crooke's description of the thinking female suggests that the process of puberty has incited the female mind in new and potentially inventive ways. In essence, Crooke is making a medical argument for the connection between female puberty, an increase in heat, and the female ability to project herself into as-yet-unknown future scenarios.
In her study of early modern humors, Gail Kern Paster argues that "the onset of maturity in girls and their passage to wifehood are understood to involve a significant increase of bodily heat and of the aggressive agency such heat entails." She describes these increases as "thermal transformations wrought by desire" and demonstrates how love will have heat in a variety of textual representations of adolescent girls. (26) But Crooke and the other writers I have touched on here offer up another way of imagining this post-pubertal heat. It does not always come from the spark of erotic sensation; rather, it bursts forth from the natural development of the female body at puberty. And, from there, the mind and imagination are incited--sometimes to venery, but sometimes to other forms of expanded female agency as well (or instead).
By describing this transition into a stretch of time during which sexually mature females remained unattached while their minds were enabled to consider multiple future possibilities, Crooke shows us a stage of girlhood that has enormous potential for rethinking how early moderns imagined the workings of the adolescent female mind. Depending upon one's social class, the time between thinking of husbands and having one might be a matter of a year, or more than a decade. (27) "The vehemency of Adolescence," as one early modern put it, lasted "betwixt the age of 14 and 28." (28) This extended adolescence may have been affected by what Helen King has coined the sixteenth-century "puberty gap" that developed as people waited to marry until their mid to late 20's. (29) But this prolonged puberty, or vehement adolescence, can be seen as a space of creative potential and interpretive possibilities in the period--not just one of physical illness and venerous madness. While these latter notions are undeniably there in the oral and written discourses of the time, they have overshadowed the other possibilities for female creativity and activity that this temporal space, into which girls were initiated at the moment of puberty, makes possible.
Crooke's distinction between male and female minds at puberty appears to be an early modern invention, for when we turn to the Aristotelian text from which Crooke and his predecessors were working, we get a more egalitarian picture. The History of Animals notes many similarities in the pubertal transformation between boys and girls: When they are "twice seven years old," both males' and females' "breasts swell," and just as the boy's voice changes, "[i]n girls, too, about this time the voice changes to a deeper note." Boys and girls also experience similar sexual longings:
Girls of this age have much need of surveillance. For then in particular they feel a natural impulse to make usage of the sexual faculties that are developing in them. For girls who give way to wantonness grow more and more wanton; and the same is true of boys, unless they be safeguarded from one temptation and another; for the passages become dilated and set up a local flux or running, and besides this the recollection of pleasure associated with former indulgence creates a longing for its repetition. (30)
Although Aristotle's girls are initially singled out for "surveillance," and their dilated passages contribute to their sexual feelings, their minds operate in indistinguishable ways from those of their male counterparts. Both genders are prone to the "recollection of pleasure" once they have indulged in wanton behavior. (31) But it is only Crooke's fourteen-year-old males who are held captive by their lustful imaginings, thoughts that eventually and inevitably will be tied to past pleasures. His girls are busy inventing their futures.
In his Historia naturalis, Pliny the Elder tells a story about art that brings an adolescent girl's thoughts on a husband front and center. In describing the origins of clay bas-relief he describes how
modelling portraits from clay was first invented by Butades, a potter of Sicyon, at Corinth. He did this owing to his daughter [filiae opera], who was in love with a young man; and she, when he was going abroad, drew in outline [lineis circumscripsit] on the wall the shadow of his face thrown by a lamp. Her father pressed clay on this and made a relief, which he hardened by exposure to fire with the rest of his pottery. (32)
In Pliny's tale, the father devises his creation by means of both his daughter's desire and her act of tracing a shadow. (33) There is no invention involved on her part. The power relations here are clearly defined. The father discovers the art; the daughter is the instrument through which he does so.
This story of Dibutades (Butades' later incarnation) and his daughter would become enormously popular in the second half of the eighteenth century, especially in France. Scholars have fastened on to the myth of the "Corinthian Maid" (as she came to be known) in their analyses of the aesthetic, political, and philosophical developments of this period. (34) She was the subject of many paintings, ballads, and poems. Shelley King argues that "the iconography of the myth ... had by the eighteenth century developed two competing visions of the maid of Corinth as an artist, one a creative human figure possessed of unusual aesthetic power, and the other a mere instrument guided by Cupid in her invention." (35) This latter vision undergirds Derrida's reading of the pictorial tradition, which focuses on paintings of the Maid looking away from her lover and toward his shadow--a pose that he uses to found his idea of the blindness at the origins of representation. (36) These aesthetic theories, however, do not necessarily apply to earlier, non-visual depictions of Dibutades's daughter. How was she appearing in England's early modern period? What kinds of cultural work were she and her myth doing? On this topic, the scholarship is largely silent. There are many fewer written, and no visual references to her at this time; however, it was during the early seventeenth century that the original myth began to morph into a story, not about a father creating a new art through his daughter's essentially passive act of imitation, but rather building on something she has invented. (37)
A 1601 English translation of Pliny is instructive, for it begins to embellish some details of its source in small but significant ways:
Dibutades, a Sicyonian born, and a Potter, [who] was the first that devised at Corinth to form an image in the same clay whereof he made his pots, by the occasion and meanes of a daughter which hee had: who being in love with a certaine young man, whensoever hee was to take a long journey far from home, used ordinarily to mark upon the wall the shaddow of her lovers face by candle light and to pourfill the same afterwards deeper, that so shee might injoy his visage yet in his absence. This her father perceiving, followed those tracks, and by clapping clay thereupon, perceived that it tooke a print, and made a sensible forme of a face: which when hee saw, hee put it into the furnace to bake among other vessels, & when it was hardened, shewed it abroad. (38)
Here, the potter's daughter does more than trace her lover's shadow, she "pourfill[s] the same afterwards deeper." "Pourfill" is an obscure term rarely used in English, but it does appear in a 1610 tract on heraldry to describe "the outward Tract, Purfle, or shadow of a thing." (39) Although such adumbration is associated in that text with "expressing to the view a vacant forme," it evokes in Pliny's text a girl's desire to "injoy" her lover "in his absence" (a phrase that recalls the originating emotion from which so many art forms spring). She retraces the lines, creating "tracks" that form a blueprint of her lover's face that her father's clay then picks up. The father is still the deviser of the art, and the daughter still appears as the "meanes" through which he comes to form images in clay; but her desire translates here into a drawing that does not just capture an initial act of tracing, but figures a repeated and deepening act of inking that continues after the beloved is gone. (40) Given the rarity of the term "pourfill," it is remarkable that Pliny's translator uses it again, two chapters earlier, to praise the contributions of Pausias to the art of painting, singling him out for his superior skill: "to pourfill well, that is to say, to make the extremities of any parts, to marke duly the divisions of parcels, and to give every one their just compasse and measure, is exceeding difficult." (41) This coincidence in terms connects a great painter to the artful acts of a desiring girl and lends even more evidence to my argument here that early moderns were seeing these mature, yet unmarried females as potential inventors.
When Robert Burton tells her story in his 1624 edition of The Anatomy of Melancholy, he takes this suggestion of artfulness to a new level. She appears in his section on Love-Melancholy, and he leads up to the anecdote with a story of "young men and maids" interrupting a Christmas mass with their love songs. The priest, in anger, prays that they will continue singing for twelve months as a punishment. They do, without food or drink, and are then forgiven. "They will in all places be doing thus," Burton writes, "young folks reading love stories, singing, telling or hearing lascivious tales, tunes, such objects are their sole delight, their continual meditation, they can thinke, discourse willingly, or speake almost of no other subject." Unlike some writers who saw this fixation as purely negative, however, Burton writes that such love is at the root of all literary and visual art forms: "maskques, mummings, banquets, merry meetings, weddings, pleasing songs, fine tunes, Poems, Love-stories, ... Elegies, Odes &c. Symbols, Emblems, Impreses, devises ... may be ascribed to it." (42)
It is in this context of love and the art forms it spawns that he introduces the daughter of Dibutades (whose name appears incorrectly as Deburiades):
Most of our arts and sciences, painting amongst the rest, was first invented, saith Patritius, ex amoris beneficio. For when the daughter of Deburiades the Sicyonian, was to take leave of her sweet heart now going to warres ... to comfort her selfe in his absence shee tooke his picture with a cole upon the wall, as the candle gave the shadowe which her father admiring perfected afterwards and it was the first picture that ever was made. (43)
Burton's tale of Dibutades's daughter is remarkable for its reshaping of Pliny's origin story: the potter's craft disappears entirely here, subsumed by a new art form altogether--picture-making, or possibly painting itself given the way Burton introduces the story. (44) This art originates with a girl's thoughts, desires, and actions, and has no connection to the materials of her father's trade. He does not create something new from what she has done; rather, he perfects a form that she herself has invented.
This departure from the myth is suggestive, I believe, of a larger early modern shift in the perception of girls' minds and their capacities, for here the adolescent girl is imagined to be a foundational agent of a new art form's creation. The myth also connects girls' desires to methodical acts of the imagination. In this story, the daughter of Dibutades does not act on her longings by offering her body, nor does she rage with greensickness. Rather, she comforts herself by drawing a figure of her beloved.
In the next two editions, Burton adds to the story and its run-up in ways that showcase the relationship between adolescent desire and the foundations of art forms. In 1628, he expands the list of creative productions that are indebted to love to include "plays, Comoedies, Attelans [Roman farces]." And he adds that that first picture, one that originated with a girl's desire both for her lover and her comfort, had helped make her city famous: "ever after Sycion for painting, carving, statuary, musicke and philosophy was preferred before all cities in Greece" (493).
Not all early modern writers gave the potter's daughter such credit. By 1638 she had become a controversial figure whom certain writers sought to put back in her passive place. She appears in Franciscus Junius's The Ancient Art of Painting as
A Corinthian Maid ... taught by Love, [who] ventured to put her unskillful hand to the first beginnings of art, drawing lines about the shadow of her Lover that was to go a great journey. Whereupon (as it is the custome of men to prosecute small beginnings with a stedfast study), her father Dibutades, a Potter by his trade, cut the space comprised within the lines, and filling it with clay, he made a pattern and hardened it in the fire, proferring to Greece the first rudiments of picture & Statuary. (45)
Junius's version is markedly more skeptical toward the girl's role. She is "unskillful," and her drawing is a "small beginning" to what her father will produce with his "stedfast study." Earlier in his work, Junius had described the "first beginnings of Art" as "very poore and imperfect" because they were rooted in "bare Imitation": "We will never rise above servile Imitation, without raising our thoughts to a more free and generous confidence," he writes, and using "our own natural wit" (29, 31). Junius imagines the truly inventive mind as male, and "natural wit" as a solitary genius far removed from the small unskillful attempts of Dibutades's daughter. But she already had emerged from the shadow of her father's story, shifting the relation of his art's creation to hers, and making it dependent on her foundational designs.
'Tis Beating in my Mind And now, I pray you, sir-- For still 'tis beating in my mind--your reason For raising this sea-storm. (The Tempest, 1.2.176-78)
Just as Dibutades's daughter was beginning her transformation from passive means for her father's art to active inventor of her own, Shakespeare was imagining Miranda, a heroine whose father's art is arguably the most famous in Shakespeare's canon. What makes Miranda especially relevant to the set of questions I am asking here is that she is one of the girls whom Shakespeare specifically keys to the age of fourteen. "Twelve year since, Miranda, twelve year since," Prospero repeats, "Thy father was the Duke of Milan"; and she was "not / Out three years old" when they arrived on the island (1.2.53-54, 40-41). Fifteen, to recall the words of the Jailer's Daughter, has not yet found her (although Prospero's desire to marry her off suggests that he fears the pushes she may be driven to when it does). Shakespeare also, notably, gives Miranda a beating mind in her opening scene. This image appears three times in The Tempest, in fact, which is half the total number of such references in all of Shakespeare's plays combined. Clearly he found in it a guiding motif for his play. And it begins inside the head of an adolescent girl. (46)
Yet it is Miranda's bleeding heart--not her beating mind--to which critics are drawn. Arthur Kirsch, for example, argues that Shakespeare called upon Montaigne's essay "On Cruelty" to dramatize Prospero's struggle for virtue: "The ordeals to which Prospero subjects others on the island are at once recapitulations of his beating memories and images of his effort to overcome them." (47) This internal struggle for virtue differentiates his labors from the natural, innocent expression of virtuous compassion and cosuffering that "is revealed throughout the play in the 'piteous heart' of Miranda."
This polarizing division between Prospero's "beating memories" and Miranda's piteous heart is symptomatic of a larger bias, not only in the critical tradition around The Tempest, but around adolescent girlhood more broadly--one that treats men and their creative struggles as a story of isolated genius and ambition, with girls like Miranda acting as artlessly emotional subsidiaries and sometime helpers. Rather than read Miranda as a "dependent, innocent, feminine extension of Prospero," (48) I propose to look more closely at how her "beating" mind--which, true to the discourse of early modern psycho-physiognomy, is reciprocally connected to her body and environment--works to incorporate, assess, and ultimately shape the operations of Prospero's mind, and ultimately the future of his art.
Miranda has provided the only human counterpoint to Prospero's behaviors and perspectives for the past twelve years. As such, her reactions to the tempest he produces at the start of the play matter, and they are all filtered through the language of her cognitive activities. The witnessing and evaluation of Prospero's art, in other words, depend on Miranda's mind--a point that complements Heather James's reading of Prospero's dependence on Miranda's compassionate ear throughout this scene. (49) The cries of the mariners, Miranda exclaims, "did knock / Against my very heart!" (1.2.8-9), and the image of the sea storm is "still beating in [her] mind" pages later. Here, the mind-body connection is not one of madness or distraction, but of potentially positive empathy. As one religious text from 1600 describes it, a beating mind that thinks upon Christ's suffering, for example, was considered to have an immensely healing effect on one's body: "the minde beating upon a remembraunce of Christes passion, shall mitigate in part the bodies paynes." (50)
Thomas Wright described this productive conjunction of the mind and heart in The Passions of the Minde:
First, then, to our imagination cometh by sense or memorie some object to be knowne, convenient or disconvenient to Nature, the which being knowne ... presently the purer spirits flock from the braine by certain secret channels to the heart, where they pitch at the doore.... The heart immediately bendeth either to prosecute it or to eschew it, and the better to effect that affection draweth other humours to help him. (51)
There are two ways, however, to read Miranda's reference to her beating mind, which suggests that something else may beat there besides the image and sounds of the shipwrecked mariners that have entered her brain through her senses and knocked at her heart for assessment. She also has a question for her father that beats in her mind: What is your reason for raising this sea storm--for using your art in this way? In this alternative reading, she takes in his art, but also evaluates it, which signals the work of the brain's middle ventricle. Prospero (and famously the play itself) ultimately will abandon his magic, but it is vital to recognize that the process starts with Miranda's adolescent perception and judgment--both of which circulate and refine themselves through the channels of her mind and body.
Miranda's cognitive operations, as many critics have noted, become more prominent and challenging for her father as the scene goes on. Prospero wants her to "ope thine ear" to hear his story--and by association hers (1.2.37)--but at fourteen, Miranda's memory is ready to recall its own stories of the past. When she tells her father, "Certainly, sir, I can" recall some moments from her life before the island, Prospero is surprised, and asks her to tell him the "image ... kept with thy remembrance" (1.2.41, 43-44). When she does share her memories, they have nothing to do with Prospero's myopic story of one man wronged by other men; rather, they feature the four or five women whom she now remembers as tending on her in Milan.
Evelyn Tribble reads this scene as a kind of mnemonic competition, and notes how Prospero responds to her memories of tending women by attempting to train her "in a memory discipline" by imposing his fantasy of parthenogenesis upon her shadowy memories. (52) And in many ways Prospero's need to control her senses and her memory here do reflect what Stephen Orgel describes as the play's "fantasy about controlling other people's minds." (53) Although Prospero is clearly threatened in this scene by his adolescent daughter's memory, however, he does also wonder at it. Yes, it is shadowy, and he ultimately will put her to sleep rather than engage it further, but her mind also has a kind of endurance--and even authority. Before he attempts to discipline her memory, he asks Miranda what else she sees in "the dark backward and abyss of time" (1.2.50). What is he hoping that she will produce for him?
The fact that Miranda displays her memory here (and to her father's awe and surprise) suggests that she has recently crossed the pubertal threshold, for memory was not seen to be strong in the minds of children. A seventeenth-century handbook poses the question: "Wherefore is it that neither young children, nor old folkes, have any hold in their memories?" and then gives the Answer:
Because that both the one and the other, are in perpetuall mooving, the one in increasing, and the other in declining, which is the cause that the Images of the objects are not so deeply ingraven in their memories, or else it may bee for this cause, that young children have the Organ of the memorie too moyst, and old folkes to dry, so that the one cannot imprint and strongly engrave the Images of the objects deepe enough in their memory, and the other perceive the object too lightly. (54)
Prospero's surprise at Miranda's powers of memory indicates that he is not used to seeing her as anything but a child. Perhaps this is the first time he perceives her as an adolescent. We know that he wants to marry her off to Ferdinand, and that this drive is likely tied to her newly ripened body; but this moment in which her memory makes itself known is just as embedded in early modern discourses about the post-pubertal female mind. (55)
Miranda's beating mind and newly sharpened memory together mark the adolescent girl's increased mental capacities. It is telling, then, that it is Prospero's declining memory (appropriate to the old, dry brain described above) that sets off the other beating mind in the play--his own. (56) The moment puts his and his daughter's brains in stark contrast and places hers in the more cognitively active and productive position. Prospero grapples with this beating at a key dramatic moment in act four, when be interrupts the "vanity of mine art" (4.1.41)--the wedding masque--because he has forgotten about the actual people plotting against him. His "old brain is troubled" by this recognition, and he is overwhelmed with "passion" (4.1.159, 143): "A turn or two I'll take to still my beating mind" (4.1.162-63).
Prospero's disturbed reaction to his beating mind counteracts his previous claim to be in control of his "Spirits, which by mine art / I have from their confines called to enact / My present fancies" (4.1.120-22). Mary Crane's cognitive readings of Shakespeare, and of this moment from The Tempest especially, are instructive here: "Prospero repeatedly conceives of the internal psychological disturbances of others as involving confinement and constraint, perhaps as a projection of his own feeling that he has powerful emotions trapped within a small and fragile space." (57) His earlier, vain reliance on his art to control the movement of his "Spirits" and enact his fantasies takes on a richer meaning when placed in this psycho-physiological context. His suggestion that Ferdinand and Miranda "retire into my cell," while he walks outside, bespeaks a kind of lingering, cognitive control he hopes to conjure. He dissolves the "solemn temples, the great globe itself" (4.1.161, 153) and so ends his artful revels; but the resonances here with the temples of the head/globe suggest that he seeks to escape the all-too-human and embodied confines of his brain.
Miranda does not control those spirits that early moderns believed circulated through all bodies and brains; nor does she control the sights, sounds and heart-felt passions that her father's art initially moves her beating mind to express. Yet Shakespeare represents her responses to the natural fluidity of these cognitive operations as thoughtfully grounded, not disordered. Upon witnessing the tempest, Miranda cries, "O, I have suffered / With those that I saw suffer!" (1.2.5-6). Her beating mind registers this event as an inter-subjective sensory experience involving heart, brain and environment; but her beating mind also assesses her father's actions and asks him to do the same. In the last scene, Prospero releases his enemies and comes to his more inter-dependent and embodied end via a similarly "beating mind" and an expression of fluid compassion for Gonzalo: "Mine eyes, ev'n sociable to the show of thine, / Fall fellowly drops. / [Aside] The charm dissolves apace" (5.1.63-65).
From its first staged workings to its final dispersal, then, Prospero's art depends on his daughter's beating mind. And this relationship does not presume that she holds a passive or secondary role to his starring genius. Rather, Shakespeare imagines Miranda's brain-work, like that of Dibutades's daughter, as a kind of blueprint for her father's future productions. Prospero's mind must, in a sense, copy what originated with Miranda's if he is to progress from being a man living in a cell, trying vainly to control the movement of his spirits, to a human who accepts his embodied relationship to the world and others. To do so, he must reject his single-minded art and imitate what started with a girl's incited mind.
(1.) For a contemporary description of these ventricles and the movement of the spirits through the brain, see Thomas Vicary, The Englishemans treasure (London, 1586), 17.
(2.) Lazarus Riverius, The practice of physick (London, 1655), 417-18.
(3.) All references to Shakespeare's plays come from The Norton Shakespeare (based on the Oxford edition), gen. ed. Stephen Greenblatt (New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 1997).
(4.) Ursula Potter, "Navigating the Dangers of Female Puberty in Renaissance Drama," Studies in English Literature 53, no. 2 (2013): 421-39, quotation on 424.
(5.) Kate Chedgzoy, "Playing With Cupid: Gender, Sexuality and Adolescence," in Alternative Shakespeares 3, ed. Diana Henderson (New York: Routledge, 2008), 138-51, quotation on 139.
(6.) A New Variorum Edition of Shakespeare, ed. Horace Howard Furness, vol. 1 (Philadelphia: J.B. Lipincott & Co., 1873), 374.
(7.) Marjorie Garber, "Romeo and Juliet: Patterns and Paradigms," in Romeo and Juliet: Critical Essays, ed. John F. Andrews (New York: Garland, 1993), 119-31, quotation on 124.
(8.) In her book-in-progress, Diva Envy: Italian Actresses and the Shakespearean Stage, Pamela Allan Brown notably departs from this reading of early modern girls by focusing on their adept performative skills. In her chapter, "The Arte of Juliet," she argues that Shakespeare's thirteen-year-old heroine is "such an icon of young love that we no longer notice how artful and theatrical she is" (unpublished ms, 1). See, as well, Deanne Williams's argument that girlhood itself is "defined by performance," put forth in her book, Shakespeare and the Performance of Girlhood (New York: Palgrave, 2014), 6. Williams's work offers many examples of actual early modern girls who created and performed. Mary Bly comments on the long line of critics who have found Juliet's use of the erotic epithalamium distressing. She reads Juliet's speech as "elaborately rhetorical and self-consciously erotic." See her "Bawdy Puns and Lustful Virgins: The Legacy of Juliet's Desire in Comedies of the Early 1600s," Shakespeare Survey 49 (2007): 97-109, quotation on 99.
(9.) Helen King, The Disease of Virgins: Green Sickness, Chlorosis and the Problems of Puberty (New York: Routledge, 2004), 88.
(10.) Potter, "Navigating the Dangers of Female Puberty in Renaissance Drama," 424.
(11.) See, for example Kaara Peterson's Popular Medicine, Hysterical Disease, and Social Controversy in Shakespeare's England (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2010); and Sara Read, Menstruation and the Female Body in Early Modern England (New York: Palgrave, 2013). I share Lesel Dawson's interest in pushing back against this model of gender and illness. In the chapter "Beyond Ophelia," in her Lovesickness and Gender in Early Modern English Literature (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008), she argues for the potential creativity of the melancholic female mind.
(12.) Thomas Twyne, The patterne of painfull adventures (London, 1594), chapter XIV.
(13.) John Marston, The Fawn, ed. Gerald A. Smith (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1965).
(14.) Jennifer Higginbotham, The Girlhood of Shakespeare's Sisters: Gender, Transgression, Adolescence (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2013).
(15.) See Bruce R. Smith "Cut and Run: Perceptual Cuts in Hearing, Seeing, and Remembering," in his Shakespeare / Cut: Forms and Effects across Four Centuries (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016). In a previous essay, I offer an extended reading of Ophelia as an insightful performer of Denmark's (and Protestant England's) lost histories. See my "Instructional Performances: Ophelia and the Staging of History," in Performing Pedagogy in Early Modern England, ed. Kathryn Moncrief and Kathryn McPherson (Surrey: Ashgate, 2011): 205-16.
(16.) John Foxe, The Unabridged Acts and Monuments Online (1570 edition) (HRI Online Publications, Sheffield, 2011). Available from: http//www.johnfoxe .org [Accessed: 10.23.15], p. 2176.
(17.) Leah S. Marcus, Janel Mueller, and Mary Beth Rose, eds. Elizabeth I: Collected Works (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2002), 35.
(18.) Till God Will: Mary Ward Through Her Writings, ed. M. Emmanuel Orchard (London: Darton, Longman and Todd, 1985), 9-10.
(19.) See, for example, the pioneering essays in Environment and Embodiment in Early Modern England, Mary Floyd-Wilson and Garrett A. Sullivan, Jr., eds. (New York: Palgrave, 2007); and those in Embodied Cognition and Shakespeare's Theatre: The Early Modern Body-Mind, Lawrence Johnson, John Sutton, and Evelyn Tribble, eds. (New York: Routledge, 2014).
(20.) Helkiah Crooke, Mikrokosmographia (London, 1615), 261. While most medical texts point to age fourteen or fifteen as the age of puberty for girls, some writers did locate this change at age twelve. Jean Bodin writes that "as men begin to feele the heat of youth at fourteene yeares; women wax ripe at twelue, and so holding on from six to six, still so find in themselues some notable chaunge in the disposition either of their bodies, or of their mindes" (The six bookes of a common-weale [London, 1606], 460).
(21.) Dr. Willis's practice of physick (London, 1684), Treatise VIII, 16. Helen King suggests that this theory of fermentation, based on the idea that all processes in the body were due to chemical changes, was developing earlier in the seventeenth century as an alternative to the plethora theory of menstruation. This competing model allows for a healthy and hot female body (King, Disease, 71-72).
(22.) King, Disease, 86.
(23.) Robert Burton, The Anatomy of Melancholy (London, 1621), 541.
(24.) Aristotle's Master-Piece (London, 1694), 2. Levinus Lemnius similarly writes of girls "in the 14 or 15 years of their age," whose blood, "no longer taken to augment their bodies, abounding, makes their minds fasten upon venerous imaginations." See The secret miracles of nature (London, 1658), 308. Jane Sharp emphasizes this venerous imagination in her 1671 rewriting of Crooke: "Men about the same age begin to change their faces and to grow downy with hair, and to change their notes and voices; Maids breasts swell; lustful thoughts draw away their minds, and some fall into Consumptions. Others rage and grow almost mad with love" (The Midwives Book, ed. Elaine Hobby [Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999], 69).
(25.) Crooke, Mikrokosmographia, 261.
(26.) Gail Kern Paster, Humoring the Body: Emotions and the Shakespearean Stage (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2004), 87 and 109.
(27.) Ilana Krausman Ben-Amos's work on early modern youth is especially helpful to consider here. She considers the period of time when many teenage daughters left their families to serve in formal or informal apprenticeships or to work as domestics in large towns. This phase, she argues, "left considerable scope for independence and initiative during their adolescent and youthful years." See her Adolescence and Youth in Early Modern England (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1994), quote on 135.
(28.) Will Greenwood, Description of the Passion of Love (London, 1657), 82.
(29.) King, Disease, 86.
(30.) Aristotle, Historia animalium, trans. D'Arcy Wentworth Thompson (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1910), Book 7, part 1 (581 a-b). In his note to this section, Thompson states that this book "is of doubtful authenticity. Nearly one half of its contents may be closely paralleled with passages in the third and fourth books of the de Gen.', and much also appears to be drawn directly from the writings of the Hippocratic School."
(31.) Aristotle also offers a male parallel to the girls' titillating "dilated passages" when he writes of the 14-year-old boy that "the breasts swell and likewise the private parts, altering in size and shape. (And by the way, at this time of life those who try by friction to provoke emission of seed are apt to experience pain as well as voluptuous sensations.)" (Historia animalium, trans. Thompson, Book 7, part 1).
(32.) Pliny the Elder, Natural History, trans. H. Rackham (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1938), 371-72 (35.43).
(33.) "The personal agent, when considered as instrument or means, is often expressed ... by opera with a genitive or possessive." Allen and Greenough's New Latin Grammar for Schools and Colleges, eds. J. B. Greenough, G. L. Kitteredge, A. A. Howard, and Benjamin L. D'Ooge (Boston: Ginn & Co., 1903), 253-54. Thank you to Brendon Reay for helping me with this point of Latin grammar.
(34.) Robert Rosenblum was the first to argue that, "For an age which was to venerate the outline engravings of Flaxman and which sought out the linear simplicity of presumably primitive and uncorrupted phases of an artistic evolution . . . the legend of the origin of painting must have offered still another confirmation of the historical priority and essentiality of pure outline." See his "The Origin of Painting: A Problem in the Iconography of Romantic Classicism," The Art Bulletin, 39, no. 4 (Dec., 1957): 279-90, quote on 285. Ann Bermingham reads the myth's depiction in the late eighteenth century as being informed by an intertwining set of interests: the "cultural hegemony of the fine arts" and the place of women "vis-a-vis artistic production and consumption." See her "The Origin of Painting and the Ends of Art: Wright of Derby's Corinthian Maid," in Painting and the Politics of Culture: New Essays on British Art, 1700-1850, ed. John Barrell (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1992), 135-65, quotation on 141.
(35.) Shelley King, "Amelia Opie's 'Maid of Corinth' and the Origins of Art," Eighteenth-Century Studies 37, no. 4 (2004): 629-51, quote on 630.
(36.) See Jacques Derrida, Memoirs of the Blind: The Self-Portrait and Other Ruins, Pascale-Anne Brault and Michael Naas, trans. (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1993), 49-51.
(37.) The myth of Butades and his daughter was often cited by Italian Renaissance artists in their treatises on painting, most notably Leon Battista Alberti, who refers to the myth, but ultimately attributes the origins of picture making to Narcissus. Cristelle L. Baskins's analysis suggests that Alberti's rewriting of the myth significantly downgrades the daughter's role: "Whereas Pliny overdetermines the invention of art, noting both the 'shadow theory' and the collaborative conception of Butades and Dibutades [his daughter], Alberti's text limits pictorial invention to male parthenogenesis." See her "Echoing Narcissus in Alberti's Delia Pittura," Oxford Art Journal 16.1(1993): 25-33, quotation on 27.
(38.) Pliny the Elder, The historie of the world (London, 1601), 551-52 (book 35, chapter 12).
(39.) John Guillim, A Display of Heraldrie (London, 1610), 42.
(40.) I suspect that Shakespeare had Dibutades's daughter in mind when he wrote All's Well That Ends Well's Helen, a desiring adolescent who claims that her "imagination / Carries no favour in't but Bertram's," and describes how she did "sit and draw / His arched brows, his hawking eye, his curls, / In our heart's table" (1.1.77-78, 88-90). The fact that Bertram's face has led her to forget her father's is especially provocative given the early modern revision of Pliny's story with its emphasis on the daughter's art.
(41.) Historie of the world, 535. The story of Parrhasius (his name in the original Pliny) appears in Book 35, chapter 36, and does not include any such terms to connect the actions of Butades's daughter to the artistry of this ancient painter.
(42.) Robert Burton, Anatomy of Melancholy (London, 1624), 423.
(43.) Burton, Anatomy of Melancholy, 423-24, second emphasis mine. In an earlier sixteenth-century translation of Polydore Vergil, the story of Dibutades is included in the chapter "Painting, and the potters crafte," but is used to describe the origins of pottery (following Pliny), not painting. See, An Abridgement of the notable works of Polidore Vergil (London, 1546), fol. 45. Vergil presents different classical views on Painting's origins, citing the names of men from Egypt, Athens and Corinth, but not naming Dibutades. His discussion is informed by Pliny the Elder's and Quintillian's in Institutio oratorio x, ii, 7. Richard Whitlock, clearly working from Burton's version (evidenced by his use of "Deburiades"), repeats it in 1654, writing that "the Daughter of Deburiades" traced her lover's shadow with coal "which her father perfected, and it was the first Picture that ever was made, according to Pliny." See his, Zootomia, or Observations of the present manners of the English (London, 1654), 488.
(44.) King explains that "[b]y the eighteenth century, the myth was variously described as the origin of drawing, or of painting, or of art" ("Amelia Opie's 'Maid of Corinth,'" 629).
(45.) Franciscus Junius, The Painting of the Ancients (London, 1638), 140-41. Frances Muecke traces the European literary and visual sources of the story, which (in prints and painting especially) came to show Cupid guiding the girl's hand: "the detail of Love's inspiration or guidance is not found in the Pliny version, nor, to my knowledge, in any other version before Junius. Junius has introduced the personification of Love by rewriting Pliny's 'capta amore iuvenis,' in love with a youth, as 'amore suadente,' taught by Love." I would argue that Burton's use of the story, presented in the context of Love's inspirational powers, provides an earlier example of this later iconographic and literary tradition. See Muecke, "'Taught By Love': The Origin of Painting Again," The Art Bulletin 81, no. 2 (1999): 297-302, quotation on 299.
(46.) The eighteen-year-old Jailer's Daughter is described by the Doctor as having a mind that "beats" upon Palamon (4.3.67); King Lear describes how "the tempest in my mind / Doth from my senses take all feeling else / Save what beats there: Filial ingratitude" (3.4.12-14); and Claudius complains of Hamlet that "This something-settled matter in his heart / Whereon his brains still beating puts him thus / From fashion of himself" (3.1.172-74).
(47.) Arthur Kirsch, "Virtue, Vice and Compassion in Montaigne and The Tempest," SEL 37, no. 2 (1997): 337-52, quote on 343. Jessica Slights gives a helpful overview of this critical tradition, noting that Miranda is typically read as an agent-less pawn in Prospero's colonialist mission. She reads Miranda as "strong-willed and independent minded," but considers those mental acts primarily in terms of her "domestic defiance" of her father and future husband. See her "Rape and the Romanticization of Shakespeare's Miranda," SEL 41, no. 2 (2001): 357-79, quote on 365. Elizabeth Spiller does read Miranda as an enabler of her father's art, although she does not read her as an active or inventive agent: "Shakespeare makes clear that Prospero's art depends on the presence of Miranda as an audience who is in some way necessary to the creation of that art." See her "Shakespeare and the making of early modern science: resituating Prospero's art," South Central Review 26, no. 1 (2009): 24-41, quotation on 30.
(48.) Lorrie Jerrell Leininger, "The Miranda Trap: Sexism and Racism in Shakespeare's Tempest," in The Woman's Part, Ruth Swift Lenz, Gayle Greene, and Carol Thomas Neely, eds. (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1983), 285-94, quote on 289.
(49.) Heather James, "Dido's Ear: Tragedy and the Politics of Response," Shakespeare Quarterly 52, no. 3 (2001): 360-82.
(50.) Christopher Sutton, Disce mori. A religious discourse, moouing euery Christian man to enter into a serious remembrance of his ende. (London, 1600), 241.
(51.) Thomas Wright, The Passions of the Minde (London, 1601), 82-83.
(52.) Evelyn B. Tribble, "'The Dark Backward and Abysm of Time': The Tempest and Memory," College Literature 33, no.1 (2006): 151-68, quotation on 159. Tribble reads the play's persistent figuring of beating minds primarily in terms of Prospero's, not Miranda's: "beating within the skull, on the edge of escaping or imploding, [it] reveals the limitations of imagining the bounded subject and the fear of the loss of control should memory be lost" (155).
(53.) Stephen Orgel, "Prospero's Wife," Representations 8 (1984): 1-13, quotation on 9.
(54.) Scipion, Dupleix, The resoluer; or Curiosities of nature written in French by Scipio Du Plesis counseller and historiographer to the French King. Vsefull & pleasant for all (London, 1635), 280-81.
(55.) Kathryn Moncrief considers how this scene echoes early modern domestic guides on how to educate daughters in obedience and feminine virtue. Although she reads Miranda as a devoted student at first, her analysis of Miranda's final speech in the play leaves room for a much more active female mind: "Does this staged moment of delight and inquisitiveness show her as ... cripplingly hindered by ... a gendered educational system that seeks only to keep her obedient? Or, does it show a keen and hungry mind and allow for the possibility of growth?" "'Obey and Be Attentive': Gender and Household Instruction in Shakespeare's The Tempest," in Gender and Early Modern Constructions of Childhood, ed. Naomi J. Miller and Naomi Yavneh (Surry: Ashgate, 2011), 127-38, quotation on 137.
(56.) The third reference to a beating mind in the play comes in the form of an admonition from Prospero to Alonso: "Do not infest your mind with beating on / The strangeness of this business" (5.1.249-50).
(57.) Mary Crane, Shakespeare's Brain: Reading with Cognitive Theory (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2001), 200. See, as well, Tribble's argument that the play "examines the cognitive and emotive costs of misrecognizing the intersubjective nature of memory and relying upon a monadic model of memory and cognition" (155).