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English - Lecture 15 and 16

English - Lecture 15 and 16 - #20 Nature is very capricious...

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#20. Nature is very capricious “For” a woman = “as” Subversive. Nature was inexorable, set patterns and standards of gender, but nature is random and capricious and can transform people in the womb. Goes against the conventions of nature. People had to adhere to gender norms or else. But gender is fluid in this sonnet, flexible and complicated. Not absolutes. Significance of nature in relation to biological sex. Complex sonnet in terms of its attitude and position. Huarte: examination of men’s wits. Early exercise in studying psychology. Women’s actions, uncouth: sin against nature (sodomy). Idea that in the womb, men can change into women and vice versa, and these people maintain characteristics of their original sex. Feminine, disyllabic rhyme. Bubbly and creates a whimsical, jocular tone. Ends on a weak syllable. Compared to sonnet 19, has a very different effect (strong, monosyllabic rhyme). Line 6: eyes emitting beams of light. The presence of the love brightens the room. Conclusion: maintains that categories of gender are unstable. Does the speaker even have a particular position? Contradictions. #57. Very different from the previous sonnet. Much more serious and impassioned. Stronger and deeper kind of attraction. #61. Setting: at bed time, the speaker is having difficulty speaking because his mind is possessed. The speaker is jealous of what the beloved might be up to. Emphasis on physical proximity. Physical and mental kind of jealousy. Quite clearly indicates a strong development in the relationship beyond what sonnet 20 allowed. #116, 126. Ups and downs of the relationship. #128. Quite an erotic sonnet. Playing a musical instrument is an analogy for sexual play.
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#144. Love triangle develops. Young man is also involved with the dark lady. Sonnets of the dark lady overlap with the 2/3 of the sonnets with the young man. The last third provides a conclusion, and the dark lady is out of the picture. #147. Dark lady represented as a bad obsession. “The bane where all men writhe.”: she is like a harbour for the entire masculine sex. She “entertains the fleet.” In one publication, the pronouns are changed. 126 of the sonnets were addressed to the young man. This was considered a scandal. 6. Mary Wroth, Pamphilia to Amphilanthus Wrote a great deal. Ratio to of female to male printed writing: 1:150 in England.
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