Authorizing Words: Speech, Writing, and Print in the English Renaissance

Authorizing Words: Speech, Writing, and Print in the English Renaissance

by Martin Elsky

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Overview

Martin Elsky here illuminates the complex interplay of linguistic theory and textual representation in English Renaissance writing. Drawing on a wide range of materials, both literary and nonliterary, Elsky focuses on the impact of speech-oriented and writing-dominated theories of language on textual practice. Among the texts Elsky discusses are Herbert's The Temple, Bacon's Magna Instauratio, Burton's Anatomy of Melancholy, Jonson 's lyrics, and works by Lily, Colet, Ascham, and Elyot.

In showing how speech, writing, and print suggest contrasting foundations for the authority of language, Elsky considers such topics as the competing concepts of textuality in humanist literature and in hieroglyphic poetry; the authenticity of writing and the distortions of speech in scientific prose works;
the social context of printing scientific prose; and the use of print to create the infinitely expandable text of philosophical skepticism.

A provocative application of contemporary literary theory to the historical analysis of texts, Authorizing Words will interest readers in such disciplines as Renaissance studies, theory of language, historical linguistics, history of science, and the history of communication.



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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781501745744
Publisher: Cornell University Press
Publication date: 05/15/2019
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 272
File size: 60 MB
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Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Martin Elsky is Professor of English at Brooklyn College of the City University of New York.

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