Spenser and interpellative memory

Ivic, C (2009) 'Spenser and interpellative memory.' In: Beecher, D and Williams, G, eds. Ars reminiscendi: mind and memory in Renaissance culture. Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies, Toronto. ISBN 9780772720481

Official URL: https://crrs.ca/publications/es19/


The Art of Memory in Renaissance scholarship was, for many years, confined to a footnote in classical rhetoric, until Francis Yates’s groundbreaking study of 1966 argues for its considerable influence on hermetic philosophy and literature. Over the last few decades, another shft in scholarship has occurred that goes well beyond Yates’s conceptualization of memory as an occult and occulted phenomenon in the history of ideas. Recent studies suggest memory to be less a theme or idea than the prevailing episteme, whose discourses, practices, and mentations produce and reproduce Renaissance culture. Humanism’s project of recovering the past by retrieving and reconstructing textuality privileges recollection as a mode of epistemological engagement with the world, as a means of subjective and collective identity formation, and as an organ for achieving ethical goals. For that reason, memory finds itself involved in the passage to modernity, when its ascendancy is challenged by the rise of seventeenth-century science and fall of rhetoric, the emergence of the European nation state, and the explorsion of the printing press and book technologies. Acknowledging this new direction in scholarship, this volume seeks to trace the plurality and complexity of memory’s cultural work throughout the English and Continental Renaissance. Among the thinkers and writers to receive attention are Thomas Hoby, Conrad Gesner, Erasmus, Conrad Celtis, Johann Sturm, Machiavelli, Jehan du Pré, Spenser, Robert Hooke, Milton, Sebastian Münster, and Shakespeare. A long critical and historical afterword extends the historical contexts around the contributions and provides an overview of the materials central to the field, as well as a sense of the field’s future development.

Item Type: Book Chapter or Section
Keywords: Mémoire (Philosophie), Littérature européenne — 1450-1600 (Renaissance) — Histoire et critique, Renaissance, Memory (Philosophy) Memory in literature. Mémoire collective — Histoire. Mémoire dans la littérature. Memory — History. Collective memory — History. European literature — Renaissance, 1450-1600 — History and criticism.
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General)
Divisions: School of Humanities
Date Deposited: 26 Feb 2013 11:30
Last Modified: 15 Aug 2021 09:33
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