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Cover Art
Author Hamlin, William M., 1957-

Title The image of America in Montaigne, Spenser and Shakespeare : Renaissance ethnography and literary reflection / William M. Hamlin.

Published New York : St. Martin's, 1995.


Location Call No. Status
 UniM Store  S22849    AVAILABLE
Edition 1st ed.
Physical description xx, 234 pages ; 22 cm
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (pages [189]-220) and index.
Contents Prologue: Lizards, Toads, and Spiders -- 1. Unaccommodated Man: Representation and Theory -- 2. Montaigne's New World -- 3. Wondrous Uncertainties: Pastoral and Primitivism in The Faerie Queene -- 4. Shakespearean Accommodation and New World Ethnography -- Epilogue: Acoma Pueblo, March 1986.
Summary The Image of America in Montaigne, Spenser, and Shakespeare examines selected works of three major Renaissance writers within the context of early modern ethnographic discourse. In a series of imaginative and detailed discussions, William M. Hamlin explores the ways in which Renaissance ideas of savagery and civility evolved during the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. This evolution was a consequence, in part, of the fascinating and complex interaction between ethnographic reportage and literary representation. Hamlin begins his discussion by arguing that all forms of ethnography or historiography are inevitably assimilative constructs. By examining early ethnographic writings of such authors as Columbus, Martyr, Las Casas, Lery, Duran, and Sahagun he shows how sixteenth-century thought moved gradually toward the recognition of difference in equality - a recognition championed above all by Montaigne. Like Montaigne's, Spenser's thought balanced natural sufficiency with sociocultural sophistication, and thus revealed an implicit awareness of the interpenetration of the concepts of savagery and civility. This interpenetration was further explored by Shakespeare, particularly in The Tempest and King Lear. Hamlin characterizes The Tempest's pastoralism as Montaignian, and argues in conclusion that the interconnectedness of concepts of nature and culture in the writings of Montaigne, Spenser, and Shakespeare suggests the extent to which New World awareness in Renaissance Europe effected a partial erasure and reconstitution of Old World patterns of thought.
Subject Montaigne, Michel de, 1533-1592 -- Knowledge -- America.
Spenser, Edmund, 1552?-1599 -- Knowledge -- America.
Shakespeare, William, 1564-1616 -- Knowledge -- America.
English literature -- Early modern, 1500-1700 -- History and criticism.
English literature -- American influences.
French literature -- American influences.
Ethnology -- History -- 16th century.
Primitivism in literature.
Ethnology in literature.
Indians in literature.
Renaissance -- England.
Renaissance -- France.
America -- In literature.
ISBN 0312125062