Literary Cultures and Public Opinion in the Low Countries, 1450-1650
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Literary Cultures and Public Opinion in the Low Countries, 1450-1650

By Jan Bloemendal
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Book Description

In the early modern Low Countries, literary culture functioned on several levels simultaneously: it provided learning, pleasure, and entertainment while also shaping public debate. From a ditty in Dutch sung in the streets to a funeral poem in Latin composed to be read for or by intimate friends, from a play performed for a prince to a comedy written for pupils – literary texts and performances often dealt with highly controversial topics of religion or politics, on a local or national, but also on a supranational scale. This volume sets out to analyse the role and function of literary culture in the formation of early modern public opinion, and proposes ways in which a modern scholar might approach early modern works of literature and other traces of literary culture to explore early modern public opinion making. The cases presented in this volume bring the Dutch and Latin literary cultures of the Low Countries in the focus of international debates on the history of public opinion.

Table of Contents
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    • Contents
    • List of Illustrations
    • Preface
    • Chapter One Literary Cultures and Public Opinion in the Early Modern Low Countries
    • Chapter Two ‘You serve me well’: Representations of Gossip, Newsmongering and Public Opinion in the Plays of Cornelis Everaert
    • Chapter Three ‘Please Do Not Mind the Crudeness of its Weave’: Literature, Gender and the Polemic Authority of Anna Bijns
    • Chapter Four The Morality of Hypocrisy: Gnapheus’s Latin Play Hypocrisis and the Lutheran Reformation
    • Chapter Five Playing to the Public, Playing with Opinion: Latin and Vernacular Dutch History Drama by Heinsius and Duym
    • Chapter Six Hugo Grotius in Praise of Jacobus Arminius: Arminian Readers of an Epicedium in the Dutch Republic and England
    • Chapter Seven Manuscript Pamphlets and Made-Up Performances: New Sources and Challenges in the Study of Public Opinion
    • Chapter Eight ‘The Cry of the Royal Blood’: Revenge Tragedy and the Stuart Cause in the Dutch Republic, 1649–1660
    • Chapter Nine ‘A Vile and Scandalous Ditty’: Popular Song and Public Opinion in a Seventeenth-Century Dutch Village Conflict
    • Chapter Ten Early Modern Literary Cultures and Public Opinion: An Epilogue in the Form of a Discussion
    • Bibliography
    • About the Authors
    • Index of Names and Subjects
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