Elizabeth I: The Voice of a Monarch

Overview

This book focuses on the ways in which Elizabeth represented herself in her own words, especially in speeches, reported conversations, and private poems from the first half of her reign, a time when she was simultaneously establishing her political authority and negotiating marriage. Her insistence on conducting her own courtships and ruling the country herself whether or not she married provoked widespread discussion and considerable resistance. Her unprecedented art of courtship, expressed in her ...

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Overview

This book focuses on the ways in which Elizabeth represented herself in her own words, especially in speeches, reported conversations, and private poems from the first half of her reign, a time when she was simultaneously establishing her political authority and negotiating marriage. Her insistence on conducting her own courtships and ruling the country herself whether or not she married provoked widespread discussion and considerable resistance. Her unprecedented art of courtship, expressed in her characteristically witty, enigmatic language and forceful rhetoric, merged with a wider social controversy over conjugal freedom of choice and women's lawful liberty that helped make the Elizabethan era an extraordinarily fertile creative period in English literature.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'This is a well-researched study. Bell lucidly highlights how Elizabeth deployed her formidable rhetorical skills to negate the threat posed by her unmarried feminine state, while simultaneously asserting her sovereign authority.'—Jourbanal of British Studies

“Bell is the only scholar out there who is able to tackle the complexities of Elizabeth’s written and reported spoken discourse with the full literary attention that it deserves. Once published, this pathbreaking book will show an entire generation of scholars how to integrate Elizabeth Tudor the writer into our understanding of rhetoric, poetics, and language in the Elizabethan age. The fruits of this heightened attention to the rhetoricity and literariness of Elizabeth’s self-presentation are clear. Bell has the potential to change the way we think about Elizabeth’s place in the histories of gender, politics, religions, diplomacy—ultimately in history itself.”—John Watkins, Professor of English, University of Minnesota

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780230621053
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 6/22/2010
  • Series: Queenship and Power Series
  • Pages: 226
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Ilona Bell is Samuel Fessenden Clarke Professor of English at Williams College. She is the author of Elizabethan Women and the Poetry of Courtship and numerous essays on Renaissance poetry and early modern women. She edited the classic, John Donne: Selected Poems.

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Table of Contents

List of Images ix

Preface xi

Acknowledgments xv

Permissions xvii

1 From Princess to Prince-A Brief Life Story 1

2 The Art of Poetry, the Art of Courtship: Elizabeth I and the Elizabethan Writing Culture 7

3 The Pre-coronation Procession: So Prince-like a Voice 31

4 Early Days: Parliamentary Speech (1559) and the Woodstock Epigrams 45

5 Diplomacy and Correspondency: Elizabeth's Reported Speech 65

6 Parliamentary Speeches (1563, 1566) and the Psalter Posy 93

7 Popular Debate and Courtly Dialogue: Always Her Own Free Woman 117

8 The Queen of Enigma and Monsieur's Departure 145

Notes 173

Index 201

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