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These paired Arthurian legends suggest that erotic desire and the desire for companionship undergird national politics. The maiden Britomart, Queen Elizabeth's fictional ancestor, dons armor to search for a man whom she has seen in a crystal ball. While on this quest, she seeks to understand how one can be chaste while pursuing a sexual goal, in love with a man while passionately attached to a woman, a warrior princess yet a wife. As Spenser's most sensitively developed character, Britomart is capable of heroic deeds but also of teenage self-pity. Her experience is anatomized in the stories of other characters, where versions of love and friendship include physical gratification, torture, mutual aid, competition, spiritual ecstasy, self-sacrifice, genial teasing, jealousy, abduction, wise government, sedition, and the valiant defense of a pig shed.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780872208551
ISBN-10: 0872208559
Format: Paperback
(215mm x 9mm x 532mm)
Pages: 496
Imprint: Hackett Publishing Co, Inc
Publisher: Hackett Publishing Co, Inc
Publish Date: 30-Nov-2006
Country of Publication: United States

Other Editions


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Author Biography - Edmund Spenser

Abraham Stoll is Assistant Professor of English, University of San Diego.

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