Interpretation and Theology in Spenser

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Cambridge University Press, 27.10.1994 - 273 Seiten
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The extent to which a knowledge of sixteenth-century theological doctrines can help readers interpret the works of Edmund Spenser has long been a matter of controversy. In Interpretation and Theology in Spenser Darryl J. Gless offers a new approach: drawing on recent literary theories, he focuses less on what Spenser intended than on the ways readers might construe both the poet's works and the theological doctrines which those works invoke. Professor Gless demonstrates the seldom-admitted fact that theological texts, like literary ones, are subject to the interpretive activity of readers. Informed by this approach to Elizabethan theology, he develops a thorough analysis of the first, most widely studied, book of Spenser's Elizabethan epic The Faerie Queene. He concludes with a fast-moving survey of ways in which theological perspectives can enrich significant moments in later, less overtly theological, passages of Spenser's great poem.

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Inhalt

Reading theology reading The Faerie Queene
1
Holiness consensus complexity contradiction
26
Multiplying perspectives
48
Constructing evil
72
Achieving sin
92
Reconstructing heroism
115
Discovering holiness
142
Spenser and dogmatic mutability
172
Notes
206
List of works cited
255
Index
267
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