Desiring Voices: Women Sonneteers and Petrarchism

By Mary B. Moore | Go to book overview

Notes

I. Introduction: Voicing Desire
1.
Joel Fineman eyes these puns too, asserting that, instead of affirming self, they show that the subject is "neither here nor there, neither now nor then, neither 'eye' nor 'eyed'" (219).
2.
This is not to say that Wroth was alone as a writer; she probably participated in several coteries and had the example of her aunt and other court ladies who wrote. Wroth's aunt however, did not write amatory sonnets, at least none that have survived.
3.
In qualifying my argument here, I heed recent cautions by feminist scholars. Ezell's chap. 1, for example, points out that a belief in the continuity of a women's tradition imbues earlier approaches to literary history of women before 1700. A. R. Jones; Margaret Hannay ("'Your vertuous'"); and others point out that prohibitions against print applied to secular, not religious, works. Ezell also notes that excluding letters and diaries from the category of literature and excluding manuscript circulation from the category of publication have diminished women's apparent literary production before 1700.
4.
See below, chaps. 7 and 8, for documentation of these assertions.
5.
See King and see Kelly for pioneering work on early modern women. For a judicious discussion that cautions against overreliance on written prescriptions for behavior, see Lamb's introduction (1-19). See also A. R. Jones on women's writing in general in the Renaissance (11-35) and Lewalski on Jacobean women (1-11). For recent bibliographies of women's writing--in all its variety--in the English Renaissance, see Beilin347-60; and Otten393-415. Recent discoveries not covered in these bibliographies include Lamb's introduction of new poems she attributes to a Sidney woman poet of Wroth's generation (194-228); Lewalski's reprinting of a poem by Lucy, Countess of Bedford, previously attributed to Donne (235-37); and Jean Kleene's current and as yet unpublished work editing the letters and poems of Lady Anne Sothewell, a selection of which has been transcribed by Louise Schleiner in her appendixes.

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