On Not Defending Poetry: Defence and Indefensibility in Sidneys Defence of Poesy by Catherine BatesOn Not Defending Poetry: Defence and Indefensibility in Sidneys Defence of Poesy by Catherine Bates

On Not Defending Poetry: Defence and Indefensibility in Sidneys Defence of Poesy

byCatherine Bates

Hardcover | April 22, 2017

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Sidney's Defence of Poesy - the foundational text of English poetics - is generally taken to present a model of poetry as ideal: the poet depicts ideals of human conduct and readers are inspired to imitate them. Catherine Bates sets out to challenge this received view. Attending very closelyto Sidney's text, she identifies within it a model of poetry that is markedly at variance from the one presumed, and shows Sidney's text to be feeling its way toward a quite different - indeed, a de-idealist - poetics. Following key theorists of the new economic criticism, On Not Defending Poetryshows how idealist poetics, like the idealist philosophy on which it draws, is complicit with the money form and with the specific ills that attend upon it: among them, commodification, fetishism, and the abuse of power. Against culturally approved models of poetry as profitable - as benefiting theindividual and the state, as providing (in the form of intellectual, moral, and social capital) a quantifiable yield - the Defence reveals an unexpected counter-argument: one in which poetry is modelled, rather, as pure expenditure, a free gift, a net loss. Where a supposedly idealist Defence sitsoddly with Sidney's literary writings - which depict human behaviour that is very far from ideal - a de-idealist Defence does not. In its radical reading of the Defence, this book thus makes a decisive intervention in the field of early modern studies, while raising larger questions about a culturedetermined to quantify the "value" of the humanities and to defend the arts on those grounds alone.
Catherine Bates is Research Professor at the University of Warwick. She studied English at Oxford and was a Fellow of Balliol College, Oxford, and of Peterhouse, Cambridge, before moving to the Department of English and Comparative Literary Studies at the University of Warwick in 1995. She served as Head of Department from 2009 to 2014...
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Title:On Not Defending Poetry: Defence and Indefensibility in Sidneys Defence of PoesyFormat:HardcoverDimensions:320 pagesPublished:April 22, 2017Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198793774

ISBN - 13:9780198793779

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Table of Contents

Part One: The Poet's Golden World1. Poetry is Profitless2. Poetry is Profitable3. Poetry is ProfitlessPart Two: The Counterfeiter1. Poetry Lies2. Lies are Profitable3. Lies are Profitless4. Poetry is Profitless5. Poetry is FreeThe Empty Chest1. Poetry Abuses2. Poetry is Useful3. Poetry is AbusedBibliographyIndex