Of all the new developments in literary theory, feminism has proved to be the most widely influential, leading to an expansion of the traditional English canon in all periods of study. This book aims to make the work of Renaissance women writers in English better known to general and academic readers so as to strengthen the case for their future inclusion in the Renaissance literary canon.
This lively book surveys women writers in the sixteenth century and early seventeenth centuries. Its selection is vast, historically representative, and original, taking examples from twenty different, relatively unknown authors in all genres of writing, including poetry, fiction, religious works, letters and journals, translation, and books on childcare. It establishes new contexts for the debate about women as writers within the period and suggests potential intertextual connections with works by well-known male authors of the same time.
Individual authors and works are given concise introductions, with both modern and historical critical analysis, setting them in a theoretical and historicised context. All texts are made readily accessible through modern spelling and punctuation, on-the-page annotation and headnotes. The substantial, up-to-date bibliography provides a source for further study and research.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgements Preface to the Second Edition by Christina Luckyj Introduction 1. PREAMBLE: WOMEN’S SELF-IMAGE AS WRITERS Margaret Tyler; Anne Dowriche; Rachel Speght; Elizabeth Jocelin 2. PROSE Katherine Parr, Queen of England; Anne Askew; Jane Anger; Elizabeth Grymeston; Dorothy Leigh; Rachel Speght; Elizabeth Caldwell; Elizabeth Clinton; Elizabeth Cary 3. AUTOBIOGRAPHY Margaret, Lady Hoby; Grace, Lady Mildmay; Mary Ward; Lady Anne Clifford 4. VERSE Isabella Whitney; Mary (Sidney) Herbert; Anne Dowriche; Aemilia Lanyer; Lady Mary Wroth; Rachel Speght Textual notes Bibliography