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d 2 one of the recurring themes encountered in the last chapter was the­ deliberate conflation of notions regarding kinds of poetry and kinds of men. The new lyric became consolidated and rose to privilege within the ­context of an ideological break with the culture of the so-called Reconquest. This break was undertaken to reconstitute Spain both politically and within the social imagination as a unified and cosmopolitan seat of the Hapsburg Empire, and key elements of Spanish identity were appropriated in the ­service of that shift. Chief among them was the ideal of the Spanish nobleman, who in previous eras had been central to the constitution of the national myth. But neither the regional associations of figures such as the Cid nor his association with heroic acts of violence and daring that were carried out to the eventual benefit of the realm, but performed first and foremost to the credit of his own honor (the constellation of features collected within the trope of the diestro braço), reflected the ideals of the nascent modern state. The state, after all, coalesces through the suppression of internal boundaries and the substitution of loyalties to the home region and the patria chica with identification with “nuestra España,” the country as a whole. Chapter 1 focused on the ways in which the sonnet form lent itself to the redescription of the noble Spanish masculine ideal. In this chapter, I will be exploring the peculiar set of cultural and subjective meanings that became attached to “song” in the poems and the criticism discussed there. If we think back to Sonnet 45 or Sonnet 30, by Acuña, or when we think about the distaste Boscán expresses for consonance in the “Letter,” we find that the “previous songs,” the “older songs,” the canción that precedes the “present” of the poem are figured as wielding a kind of power that must be mastered and contained if modern civilization is to progress. Both armígero son (Acuña) and the “caballero consonance” that gallops through the mind in Boscán’s “Letter” attribute a suspect force to poems themselves, otro tiempo lloré y ahora canto: juan boscán courtierizes song 60 d imperial lyric and not simply to the men who compose and enjoy those poems. Part of the reason for this resistance lies in a shift in the function assigned to poetry between nonmodern and modern contexts. This shift is often referred to in terms of “Homer and Horace,” a distinction that connotes the difference between the memorializing role played by epic and ballad—in which poetic discourse is assumed to play an important role in the conservation and the transmission of culture—and a lyric-based poetics that critics from the time of Horace forward have associated with urbane and sophisticated humanism that celebrates the self. In this chapter, I address Boscán’s poetry, focusing on the First and Second Books in order to show how they supported and extended Boscán’s project of accommodating Spain’s noblemen to the social and cultural circumstances of the modern Spanish state. The First and Second Books of Boscán’s text represent a trajectory of song, first, as an initial account of irrational, uncontainable and maddening consonance is mediated and rationalized through its remodeling into the forms and conventions of Petrarchan discourse, and, second, as this Petrarchan lyric is refashioned into a poetic discourse appropriate to the modern Spanish courtier. At the end of the Second Book, Boscán’s new lyric emerges as a poetry that is ­neither traditional to Castile nor to Petrarchism, but which represents instead the utterance of the man who understands the stakes of both languages and who selects a middle path. Thus, in Poem 115, near the end of the sequence, Boscán’s lyric speaker will crow that “su cantar del nuestro es diferente” (8) (“their song is different from ours”). He is referring to the fact that in distinction to other courtly lyrics, his poems now assimilate Castilian logic, Italian models and the native Spanish (though not Castilian) lyrics of the Valencian troubadour Ausiàs March, and thus that lyric has been reconstituted as the poetry of “nuestra España.” But he is also pleased with the wider implications of this type of song: his songs are the product of satisfied, moderate love that is both lived and sung in terms of neo-Stoic values that accord with the Horatian golden mean. Las...


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