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作者 Mohr, Melissa Jane
書名 Strong language: Oaths, obscenities, and performative literature in early modern England
國際標準書號 0496330209
book jacket
說明 255 p
附註 Source: Dissertation Abstracts International, Volume: 64-03, Section: A, page: 0917
Adviser: Stephen Orgel
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Stanford University, 2003
My dissertation examines swearing as an important linguistic model within early modern literature. I consider swearing as performative language in the sense defined by J. L. Austin---language that itself does something or forces its readers or hearers to act in certain ways. Oaths such as 'by God' or 'by God's bones' have in the early modern period the power to control God, to make him look down from heaven and guarantee that a swearer's words are true, that he or she really intends to fulfill a promise. Many early modern poems, plays, and prose treatises model themselves after oaths, I argue, aspiring to affect their readers as directly and as powerfully as oaths do God
I first look at anti-swearing tracts from the Middle Ages to the Restoration and rhetorical handbooks such as George Puttenham's The Arte of English Poesie to establish the ways in which the Reformation changes early modern conceptions of oaths. I then consider poems of Stephen Hawes, Robert Southwell, and Ben Jonson, investigating how their use of swearing as a poetic model is inflected by its Reformation transformations and by differing conceptions of the social and political roles of oaths. While swearing serves as a model for poetry's, and the theater's, effects on its audience, it is banned on stage in 1606. I examine the two Tamburlaine plays, Arden of Faversham, and Ben Jonson's The Magnetic Lady to discover what makes swearing on stage different from swearing in poetry, in prose tracts, or in life. I then turn to obscene words (which were not considered 'swearing' in the Renaissance) and attempt to ascertain what counts as obscenity in the works of three authors who are markedly concerned with it---Thomas Elyot, Erasmus, and George Puttenham. The final chapter brings these two threads together, reading collections of epigrams by Sir John Davies, John Davies of Hereford, and John Harington, and satires by John Marston, genres in which obscenities begin to take on swearing's function as guarantor of truth---in which they become oaths
School code: 0212
Host Item Dissertation Abstracts International 64-03A
主題 Literature, English
Alt Author Stanford University
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