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Preface

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  22 September 2009

Alison Shell
Affiliation:
University of Durham
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Summary

My first book, Catholicism, Controversy and the English Literary Imagination, 1558–1660 (1999), presented the English and Latin writing of post-Reformation Catholic Englishmen and women as a topic suitable for serious literary-critical consideration in the academic mainstream. While writing it I had moments of feeling like a lone crusader, since I was less aware than I should have been that I was part of a movement: what Ken Jackson and Arthur Marotti have identified as the ‘turn to religion’, which has been such a defining feature of early modern literary studies for the last decade or so. In part, this has surely been due to the long-term effects of new historicism; while often characterised by reductive attitudes to religion in its heyday, the movement spread a tolerance of non-canonical writing and an attentiveness to the historical moment which remain essential stimuli to any research that attempts to span literature and history. Researchers who operate from within English departments, as I do, have also been able to draw upon huge recent historical advances in our understanding of the English Reformation, for which we must thank such scholars as John Bossy, Patrick Collinson, Eamon Duffy, Christopher Haigh, Peter Lake, Nicholas Tyacke and Alexandra Walsham. While our preoccupations have often been different from those of historians, this has led to creative cross-fertilisation, and historians have sometimes repaid the compliment by engaging with material more usually the province of literary critics.

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2007

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  • Preface
  • Alison Shell, University of Durham
  • Book: Oral Culture and Catholicism in Early Modern England
  • Online publication: 22 September 2009
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511483998.001
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  • Preface
  • Alison Shell, University of Durham
  • Book: Oral Culture and Catholicism in Early Modern England
  • Online publication: 22 September 2009
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511483998.001
Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

  • Preface
  • Alison Shell, University of Durham
  • Book: Oral Culture and Catholicism in Early Modern England
  • Online publication: 22 September 2009
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511483998.001
Available formats
×