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'Pictures of Every Posture in the Mind': Judging Sidney's Characters

McIlwraith, Fraser; (2020) 'Pictures of Every Posture in the Mind': Judging Sidney's Characters. Sidney Journal , 37 (1/2) pp. 89-111. Green open access

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Abstract

Throughout the long history of its reception, Sidney's Arcadia has been consistently distinguished from other examples of Renaissance prose fiction by claims on behalf of its lifelikeness or proto-novelistic "realism." Presenting a legal analysis of the Old Arcadia, this article suggests that Sidney's representational methods, however, do not so much anticipate the novelistic mode, as draw heavily on the classical resources of forensic rhetoric and probable argument. Reading both in the trial scene of Book V and beyond, this article shows how forensic status theory informs the plotting even of non-legal scenes, and explores the implications of Sidney's preoccupation with motive and intention for readerly engagement with his fiction. Neoclassical debates concerning poetic unity and representational verisimilitude are also discussed, alongside Arcadia's sources in Roman New Comedy and Greek romance.

Type: Article
Title: 'Pictures of Every Posture in the Mind': Judging Sidney's Characters
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: http://www.sidneysociety.org/?page_id=30
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the version of record. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Dept of English Lang and Literature
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10150212
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