"But oh, I could it not refine": Lady Hester Pulter's Textual Alchemy

FieldValue
dc.contributor.authorPadaratz, Pricilla
dc.date.accessioned2016-12-01T16:44:52Z
dc.date.available2016-12-01T16:44:52Z
dc.date.issued2016
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10393/35544
dc.identifier.urihttp://dx.doi.org/10.20381/ruor-502
dc.description.abstractHester Pulter addresses personal and spiritual transformation in a unique way. The elusive nature of alchemical language allows Pulter to express the incomplete, ongoing process of internal transformation, with all its difficulties and inconsistencies. By means of a rich alchemical lexicon, Pulter stresses suffering rather than consolation, conflict rather than reconciliation, and lack of resolution rather than closure in her poetry. She repeatedly tries to see a divine order in earthly suffering, but she insists upon this suffering, and she often argues for a gendered element to this pain, particularly as a mother grieving her dead children. The lack of resolution we see in Pulter's writing pushes against conventional constructions of the ideal female Christian as passively accepting God's plan, and shows the limits of the religious lyric to truly provide consolation. My thesis will extend the discussion of Pulter's use of alchemical imagery and symbols in her poetry, and will argue that she uses alchemical language to reflect how transformation and healing are never, in fact, fully achieved during our physical existence. The promise of literary alchemy as a vehicle for transformation and spiritual regeneration is not always fulfilled in Pulter's work.
dc.language.isoen
dc.publisherUniversité d'Ottawa / University of Ottawa
dc.subjectalchemy
dc.subjectreligion
dc.subjectHester Pulter
dc.subjectwomen's writing
dc.subjectmanuscript
dc.subjectearly modern
dc.subjectdevotional lyric
dc.title"But oh, I could it not refine": Lady Hester Pulter's Textual Alchemy
dc.typeThesis
dc.contributor.supervisorBurke, Victoria
thesis.degree.nameMA
thesis.degree.levelMasters
thesis.degree.disciplineArts
uottawa.departmentEnglish
CollectionThèses, 2011 - // Theses, 2011 -

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