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Dianne Mitchell

February 5 @ 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Mary Wroth’s Cabinet Poems

My work is about the intersections of materiality and literary form. In this talk, I focus on Lady Mary Wroth’s reputation for emotionally “withdrawing” into the stanzas of her seventeenth-century sonnet collection Pamphilia to Amphilanthus. Wroth’s poems have been read as deeply privative, eliciting comparisons with the lyrics that her romance heroine (also called Pamphilia) hides in her cabinet. But by investigating the material realities of the Renaissance cabinet – a novel room intended for both concealment and display – I argue that the paradoxical permeability of these spaces affords radical forms of intimacy in Wroth’s poems.


February 5
3:00 pm - 5:00 pm


HMNSS 2212