© 2009

Wounds, Flesh, And Metaphor In Seventeenth-Century England

  • Authors

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-x
  2. Sarah Covington
    Pages 1-18
  3. Sarah Covington
    Pages 19-53
  4. Sarah Covington
    Pages 55-81
  5. Sarah Covington
    Pages 83-115
  6. Sarah Covington
    Pages 117-143
  7. Sarah Covington
    Pages 145-174
  8. Sarah Covington
    Pages 175-179
  9. Back Matter
    Pages 181-252

About this book


Wounds, Flesh and Metaphor in Seventeenth-Century England explores the theme of physical and symbolic woundedness in mid-seventeenth century English literature. This book demonstrates the ways in which writers attempted to represent the politically and religiously fractured state of the time and re-imagined the nation through language and metaphor in the process. By examining the creative permutations of the wound metaphor, Covington argues for the centrality of the charged imagery, and language itself, in shaping the self-representations of an age.


bibliography body corpus discourse England event love metaphor seventeenth century

About the authors

SARAH COVINGTON is Associate Professor of History at Queens College, The City University of New York, USA.

Bibliographic information


"Covington's study presents a fluently written and engaging analysis of the imagery of this most bloody, fractured, and scarred period of English history." - American Historical Review"Covington carefully combines contemporary linguistic theory and philosophy of the abject with extensive archival research to demonstrate that metaphor, in Paul Ricoeur s words, 'shatter[s] and increase[s] our sense of reality by shattering and increasing our language.' Likewise, this book increases our sense of the reality of early modern woundedness." - Renaissance Quarterly"Wounds, Flesh, and Metaphor is admirably engaging and thoughtful, bringing a new perspective to study of the civil wars of the investigation of language at the very basic levels of speech and description, but worked through a very contemporary historiographical nexus that leads to a very satisfying study." - The Times Higher Education Supplement

"Covington probes the development of a pervasive and disturbing figure of speech through a broadly informed and richly detailed analysis of key early modern political and cultural texts. Covington's sophisticated comparison of legal tracts, historical accounts, political polemics,spiritual treatises,and amorous verse shows how they all fuse spectacular images of strength and mutilation in a century of civil war andthus perpetuate and transform older ideas of martyrdom and redemptive suffering." - Richard C. McCoy, Professor of English, Queens College and The Graduate Center, CUNY and author of Alterations of State: Sacred Kingship in the English Reformation

"A fascinating, wide-ranging and - dare I say - penetrating study, combining high theory and close reading with effects so powerful they sometimes distress, even wound." - Diane Purkiss, Keble College, Oxford University and author of Literature, Politics and Gender in the English Civil War