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Title: Textual monumentality and memory in early modern England, 1560-c.1650
Author: Hanebaum, Simone
ISNI:       0000 0004 7968 5611
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 2019
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This study examines how manuscript and print culture functioned as a site of memory and commemoration in early modern England, creating 'textual monuments' to individuals, families, and communities. This dissertation shifts scholarly attention from genre and the structures of texts to the commemorative function of a vast array of texts, from diaries to parish histories, to demonstrate the profound impact of identity, religious change, collection, selection and interpretation, and memory on the creation of these textual monuments. This shift of focus to commemorative intent circumvents the pitfalls of genre-driven analysis and encourages a holistic and interdisciplinary study of memory in early modern England. The thesis demonstrates how the term 'monument' diversified and came to take on new meanings. Increasingly, it was used to refer to texts and writing in the post-Reformation period. These changes were in part driven by religious change wrought by the Reformation. The decline of purgatory and traditional religion and the rise of Protestant predestinarian and providential belief shifted the purpose of commemoration to edification of the living. This shift, alongside the rise of literacy and expansion of print culture, shaped what was commemorated about the dead, allowed new forms of commemorative texts to emerge, and created new meanings and interpretive frameworks for existing textual monuments, particularly a return to the biblical tradition of memorialising the grace and power of God. The thesis argues that textual monuments not only commemorated the masculine ideals of the patriarchal householder but also that their creation was an act of masculinity articulating a man's responsibilities for posterity. Finally, the examination of civic, parochial, and personal archives suggests that the archive was inherently monumental and subject to the negotiation of power and authority through processes of selection, transcription, accessibility, and that it commemorated its compilers alongside the communities for which it was created.
Supervisor: Walsham, Alexandra Marie Sponsor: Social Sciences and Humanities Council of Canada ; Cambridge Trust
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: Early Modern England ; The Reformation ; Memory ; Identity ; Masculinity ; Archives ; Monuments