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By Stephen Deng

This book posits that cash and their (especially literary) representations have been inextricably sure with a number of key elements for English nation formation in the interval. After surveying a number of definitions and histories of the “state” in the first bankruptcy, this e-book identifies 5 significant dimensions of country formation which correspond to the 5 chapters of the ebook: centralized institutional advancements; the boundaries and volume of nation and monarchical authority in keeping with customized, cause and average legislation; the advance and enlargement of a criminal framework, specifically statute legislations, for ethical legislation and upholding of nation prerogatives; the political theology of nation glaring specifically within the air of secrecy of kingship; and the territorial obstacles of kingdom authority, together with their influence on intra-state kinfolk. many of the chapters marry a component of coinage and a literary textual content (or set of texts) to at least one of the foremost elements in English kingdom formation.

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Coinage and State Formation in Early Modern English Literature

This book posits that cash and their (especially literary) representations have been inextricably certain with numerous key components for English country formation in the interval. After surveying numerous definitions and histories of the “state” in the first bankruptcy, this booklet identifies 5 significant dimensions of kingdom formation which correspond to the 5 chapters of the publication: centralized institutional advancements; the boundaries and quantity of nation and monarchical authority in accordance with customized, cause and common legislation; the advance and growth of a felony framework, specifically statute legislation, for ethical rules and upholding of nation prerogatives; the political theology of kingdom obvious specially within the air of mystery of kingship; and the territorial limitations of nation authority, together with their influence on intra-state kinfolk.

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Extra resources for Coinage and State Formation in Early Modern English Literature

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Such coining metaphors, I argue, partially explain coin imagery in Measure for Measure, a play concerned with the state’s ability to regulate morality. For example, Angelo employs a coin metaphor in his explanation of why illicit procreation is immoral. However, the subsequent actions of its agents call into question the state’s own offenses against the coin, especially debasement. In addition to connotations of bastardy, coinage had historical associations with justice, another key concern of the play.

While Mark Osteen and Martha Woodmansee correctly indicate the critics’ desire to “historicize money and to reattach it to the broader social world,” Shell and Goux nonetheless rely on a stable conception of how money and exchange function. For example, Goux relates gold, the “universal equivalent” to the phallus, the Father, God, and all versions of the transcendental signifier. ”35 Money is the tool that effects this mode of substitution, but Goux relies on the assumption that money functions as an unproblematic “universal equivalent” for exchange.

Although the play begins with tension between aristocrats and merchants—represented in the conflict between Lincoln and Oatley—by the end of the play a coalition emerges between monarch, aristocracy, and merchant, figured in the respective characters of the king, Lacy, and Eyre. At the same time, most of the journeyman and apprentice shoemakers who are the ostensible celebrants of the play’s “holiday” are noticeably absent in the final scene. And those who remain, most notably Firk and Ralph, become clear examples of the laborers’ exclusion from English gains at foreigners’ expense through trade and war.

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