The Queen's Mercy
Gender and Judgment in Representations of Elizabeth I
|Publication Date||July 2014|
|Formats||Hardcover Ebook (EPUB) Ebook (PDF)|
|Series||Queenship and Power|
During the Elizabethan era, beliefs about women's susceptibility to emotion intersected with debates about monarchical power and equity in law to make 'mercy' a particularly complex concept. It made frequent appearances in the work of writers of the era such as Shakespeare, Spenser, Sidney, Daniel, and others who explored the wellsprings of clemency and its role in society. Through a fresh reading of such depictions, author Mary Villeponteaux shows that, under Elizabeth I, mercy was contested both conceptually and in practice and that its cultural representation was directly shaped by tensions surrounding the exercise of judgment by a woman on the throne.