GESA STEDMAN (ed.),
Englische Frauen der frühen Neuzeit: Dichterinnen, Malerinnen,
Mäzeninnen, (Darmstadt: Primus, 2001), 240 pp. € 29.90
of female poets, painters and patrons of art encapsulate the
rich contribution which women made to English culture in the
early modern period. Often highly restricted in respect of their
creative freedom, or written out of history, they sought a completely
individual direction and artistic form of expression, which
is embodied in these fascinating and completely different life
investigation provides a comprehensive survey of female creativity,
and artistic patronage and politics, in Early Modern England.
Individual portraits of patronesses such as Elizabeth I or Mary
Sidney Herbert, of poetesses like Katherine Philips or Aphra
Behn, and painters such as Mary Beale, show on the one hand
how rich a contribution women made to early modern culture.
On the other hand, however, each individual life history demonstrates
the compromises these women were forced to make, and the subjections
they underwent in their attempts to be openly recognized in
artistic circles, as well as the resistance and slanders they
faced. These cultural-historical essays bring to life the completely
individualistic directions and forms of expression of female
artists in the early-sixteenth to the mid-eighteenth centuries.
With contributions about: Margaret More Roper; Elizabeth I.;
Mary Sidney Herbert, Countess of Pembroke; Aemilia Lanyer; Lady
Mary Wroth; Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle; Katherine
Philips; Mary Beale; Aphra Behn; Anne Killigrew; Anne Finch,
Countess of Winchilsea; Delarivier Manley; Mary Astell; Lady
Mary Wortley Montagu.