In this Book

The Aesthetics of Service in Early Modern England
summary

In The Aesthetics of Service in Early Modern England, Elizabeth Rivlin explores the ways in which servant-master relationships reshaped literature. The early modern servant is enjoined to obey his or her master out of dutiful love, but the servant?s duty actually amounts to standing in for the master, a move that opens the possibility of becoming master. Rivlin shows that service is fundamentally a representational practice, in which the servant who acts for a master merges with the servant who acts as a master. 

Rivlin argues that in the early modern period, servants found new positions as subjects and authors found new forms of literature. Represent- ations of servants and masters became a site of contact between pressing material concerns and evolving aesthetic ones. Offering readings of dramas by Shakespeare, Jonson, and Thomas Dekker and prose fictions by Thomas Deloney and Thomas Nashe, Rivlin suggests that these authors discovered their own exciting and unstable projects in the servants they created.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. pp. 1-1
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Title Page, Copyright
  2. pp. 2-5
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Contents
  2. pp. v-7
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. vii-viii
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Introduction: The Aesthetics of Service
  2. pp. 3-25
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Chapter One: Shakespeare’s Apprenticeship: Performing Service in The Comedy of Errors and The Two Gentlemen of Verona
  2. pp. 27-51
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Chapter Two: Prose Fiction and the Mobile Servant: Nashe’s The Unfortunate Traveller
  2. pp. 53-72
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Chapter Three: “Play the Shoemaker” : Craft and Commerce in Deloney’s The Gentle Craft and Dekker’s The Shoemaker’s Holiday
  2. pp. 73-106
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Chapter Four: “Iterate the Work”: The Alchemist and Ben Jonson’s 'Labors of Service'
  2. pp. 107-134
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Chapter Five: Tragicomic Service: The Winter’s Tale and The Tempest
  2. pp. 135-164
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Notes
  2. pp. 165-194
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Bibliography
  2. pp. 195-208
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Index
  2. pp. 209-218
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. About the Author
  2. pp. 219-228
  3. restricted access Download |
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.