Narrative and Meaning in Early Modern England: Browne's Skull and Other Histories
Howard Marchitello's study of narrative techniques in Renaissance discourse analyzes imaginative conjunctions of literary texts, such as those by Shakespeare and Thomas Browne, with developments in scientific and technical writing. In Narrative and meaning in early modern England he explores the relationship between a range of early modern discourses, such as cartography, anatomy, and travel writing, and the developing sense of the importance of narrative in producing meaning. Narrative was used in the Renaissance as both a mode of discourse and an epistemology; it produced knowledge, but also dictated how that knowledge should be understood. Marchitello uses a wide range of cultural documents to illustrate the importance of narrative in constructing the Renaissance understanding of time and identity. By highlighting the inherent textual element in imaginative and scientific discourses, his study also evaluates a range of contemporary critical practices and explores their relation to narrative and the production of meaning.
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