Abstract

Some of Andrew Marvell's poems are marked by the presence of powerful and attractive nymphets and threatening adult women. They are the manifestation of a disturbance in Marvell's thought concerning adult sexuality. At times, his speakers read like early versions of Humbert Humbert, the famous narrator of Nabokov's Lolita, whose attraction to young virgins betrays a desire to avoid adult sexuality. Continuities in the use of language and the valuation of women suggest that, despite the change of speakers, several poems can be read as a kind of confession and justification by Marvell, raising some questions about the poet's sexuality.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1522-9270
Print ISSN
0039-3657
Pages
pp. 165-182
Launched on MUSE
2008-02-25
Open Access
No
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