The Poetics of Melancholy in Early Modern England

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Cambridge University Press, Sep 30, 2004 - Literary Criticism - 252 pages
The Poetics of Melancholy in Early Modern England explores how attitudes toward, and explanations of, human emotions change in England during the late sixteenth and early seventeenth century. By emphasising the shared concerns of the 'non-literary' and 'literary' texts produced by figures such as Edmund Spenser, John Donne, Robert Burton, and John Milton, Douglas Trevor asserts that quintessentially 'scholarly' practices such as glossing texts and appending sidenotes shape the methods by which these same writers come to analyse their own moods.
 

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Contents

The reinvention of sadness
1
The margins of learning
24
Detachability and the passions in Edmund Spensers The Shepheardes Calender
34
Sadness in The Faerie Queene
47
Hamlet and the humors of skepticism
63
John Donne and scholarly melancholy
87
the Sidenote as Symptom
105
Robert Burtons melancholic England
116
Solitary Milton
150
The scholarly method of the antiprelatical and divorce tracts
164
Isolated temptations in Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained
180
angelic corporeality in Paradise Lost
193
Notes
196
Bibliography
229
Index
246
Copyright

Burtons scholarly method
130

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About the author (2004)

Douglas Trevor is Assistant Professor of English at the University of Iowa. He is co-editor of Historicism, Psychoanalysis, and Early Modern Culture (2000), and has published articles on Michel de Montaigne, Thomas More, Edmund Spenser, John Donne, George Herbert, and other early modern writers. He is also a contributing editor to The Complete Pelican Shakespeare (2002), and serves on the Editorial Board of the Shakespeare Yearbook.

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