Two Critical Errors in the Study of Ben Jonson's Nondramatic Poetry

dc.contributor.advisor Donovan, Kevin en_US Ramsay, William en_US
dc.contributor.committeemember Comas, James en_US
dc.contributor.department English en_US 2015-08-25T14:42:26Z 2015-08-25T14:42:26Z 2015-06-25 en_US
dc.description.abstract This essay argues that two influential accounts of Ben Jonson's nondramatic verse are mistaken. The first account, shared by several critics, claims that Jonson feigns a commonwealth in his poetry. The second account, put forward by Stanley Fish, argues that Jonson hints at and engenders a community of the same in his poetry of praise. Both accounts suffer from a failure to carefully attend to Jonson's words. The first account fails to consider the meaning of Jonson's phrase “feign a commonwealth.” The meaning of that phrase, as used by several other Renaissance writers, suggests that Jonson does not feign a commonwealth. In the second account, Stanley Fish offers several tendentious interpretations of Jonson's poetry, and, on occasion, disregards the integrity of the texts of Jonson's poems. Combined with his deliberate equivocation and obfuscation, these flaws undo his argument that Jonson gestures at a community of the same. The essay concludes with a call for greater philological probity and sensitivity in the study of Jonson's nondramatic verse. en_US M.A. en_US
dc.publisher Middle Tennessee State University en_US
dc.subject.umi Literature en_US
dc.thesis.degreegrantor Middle Tennessee State University en_US
dc.thesis.degreelevel Masters en_US
dc.title Two Critical Errors in the Study of Ben Jonson's Nondramatic Poetry en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US
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