By Raymond A. Anselment
Marprelate, Milton, Marvell, and fast are the most effective prose satirists in a remarkably wealthy literary period. concentrating on those key figures, ‘Betwixt Jest and Earnest’ examines the speculation and perform of non secular prose within the 16th and 17th centuries. spotting the problems inherent in trying to rework unimaginative animadversion into potent satire, it analyses the ways that Marprelate’s tracts, Milton’s anti-prelatical satires, Marvell’s The practice session Transpros’d, and Swift’s A story of a Tub variously unravel the decorum of spiritual satire.
even if the research isn't in particular an highbrow historical past or a inflexible definition of spiritual attitudes in the direction of jest, it does assemble easy indicators of changing sensibilities within the interval. Marprelate, Milton, Marvell, and fast symbolize different spiritual tendencies, yet they percentage an analogous satiric imaginative and prescient. every one acknowledges the crucial value of demeanour, and all improve dramatic satire seriously depending on personality, an emphasis which frequently displaces the fast matters contested, yet by no means obscures the bigger matters the satirists pursue. Their preoccupations with the character of culture, their emphasis at the self, and their sensitivity to language mirror related involvements in questions of simple task and absolutism. The virtues and abuses they locate in such principal questions will not be specific to them or their time, yet their emphases are, for they wrote in an age during which delicate males may confront revolution and response with an insurance now not simply possible as soon as that period had passed.
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Additional info for Betwixt Jest and Earnest: Marprelate, Milton, Marvell, Swift & the Decorum of Religious Ridicule (Heritage)
Betwixt Jest and Earnest: Marprelate, Milton, Marvell, Swift & the Decorum of Religious Ridicule (Heritage) by Raymond A. Anselment