Title

Spenser’s Allegory of Temperance: A Study in Comparative Poetics

Author's Department

English & Comparative Literature Department

Document Type

Research Article

Publication Title

Ben Jonson Journal

Publication Date

1998

doi

https://doi.org/10.3366/bjj.1997.4.1.9

Abstract

In this paper, I wish to address a central paradox in the traditional interpretation of Edmund Spenser's Faerie Queene, Book II, canto xii, originating in a discrepancy between Spenser's stated intentions as an epic writer and the mode of presentation that defines his po­etic objectives. The paradox cannot be resolved as long as allegory is generally conceived as a public mode of address. Close atten­tion to the rhetorical structure of Spenser's allegory of Temperance, however, indicates that the alleged paradox involves a mistaken application of a literary category rather than a genuine insight into literature.

First Page

115

Last Page

129

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