Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE (www.oxfordhandbooks.com). © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 17 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This article reviews a range of sixteenth-century first-person writing, including career narratives, chronicles, accounts of experience abroad, and versions of the self in verse. It then discusses Thomas Whithorne's autobiographical manuscript, ‘The Book of Songs and Sonnets’. Whithorne's manuscript records his verse, both secular and religious, contextualizing them with long prose narratives which present a life that strives to achieve social and professional success at the same time as conforming to approved standards of virtue. This text, however, shares a great deal in common with, and can only be properly understood as an example of, first-person writing more generally in the sixteenth century, particularly its concern with finding a stable and acceptable social identity, and its use of verse to produce rhetorically heightened versions of the self.

Keywords: first-person writing, sixteenth-century texts, personal experience, The Book of Songs and Sonnets

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.