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Pseudonymous Shakespeare

Rioting Language in the Sidney Circle

Pseudonymous Shakespeare by Penny McCarthy
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An investigation into modes of early modern English literary 'indirection,' this study could also be considered a detective work on a pseudonym attached to some late sixteenth-century works. In the course of unmasking 'R.L.', McCarthy scrutinizes devices employed by writers in the Sidney coterie: punning, often across languages; repetitio-insistence on a sound, or hiding two persons 'under one hood'; disingenuous juxtaposition; evocation of original context; differential spelling (intended and significant). Among McCarthy's stunning-but solidly underpinned-conclusions are: Shakespeare used the pseudonym 'R.L.' among other pseudonyms; one, 'William Smith', was also his 'alias' in life; Shakespeare was at the heart of the Sidney circle, whose literary programme was hostile to Elizabeth I; and his work, composed mainly from the late 1570s to the early 90s, occasionally 'embedded' in the work of others, was covertly alluded to more often than has been recognized.
Taylor and Francis; December 2016
288 pages; ISBN 9781351907965
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Title: Pseudonymous Shakespeare
Author: Penny McCarthy
 
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