Concordia University-Wisconsin , WI
This book uses the notion of the public sphere to produce a new view of the history of England in the post-reformation period, tracing its themes from the 1530s to the early eighteenth century. The contributors, who are all leaders in their own fields, bring a diverse range of approaches and types of material and analysis to bear on the central theme. The book aims to put the results of some of the most innovative and exciting work in the field before the reader in accessible form. Each chapter can stand on its own and represents a contribution to its own area of study and sub-period as well as to the overall argument of the book. Approaching the central questions raised by the book in different ways, and reaching differing conclusions, the essays do not follow a single line of argument, but rather show how a series of questions and issues, organized around the topos of the public sphere, can make this period look different. Politics, culture and religion all feature prominently in the resulting analysis, which should be of interest both to advanced undergraduate students of early modern English history and literature as well as more advanced researchers in those and related fields.