restricted access Spenser’s Mind of Exile and Colonial Apologetics

This essay examines A View of the Present State of Ireland (1596) and Colin Clouts Come Home Againe (1596) as projects born in the creative matrix of Spenser’s state of exile between England and Ireland. I show that a complex rhetoric of national identity was at play in the margins of England’s geopolitical borders—a rhetoric that critiques the center of power. Spenser codifies such rhetoric in his polemical and imaginative literature, struggling (but ultimately failing) to defend English colonial expansion.