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dc.contributor.advisorHutson, Lorna
dc.contributor.authorSutherland, Zoë
dc.coverage.spatialx, 212 p.en_US
dc.description.abstractJustice often doesn’t feel right. We make decisions according to rules that seem to weigh unfairly in favour of one person or another, to uphold an egregious principle, or to be plain wrong: we say life isn’t fair. Human rights law treats as unrealistic its foundational principle that humans are free and equal in dignity and rights. What we make of one another, however, entails an ethics of interpretation which this thesis locates in the realist dramaturgy of Ben Jonson (1572-1637). Focusing on Jonson’s comedies, the thesis identifies a relationship between legally-inflected seventeenth-century English drama and twentieth-century international human rights law. It focuses on four of Jonson’s comedies in which poetic making informs how individuals come to know and value each other; Volpone, or The Fox (1606), Epicene, or The Silent Woman (1609), Bartholomew Fair (1614), and The Devil Is an Ass (1616). By showing how poetic making constitutes individualism in Jonson, we can recover dignity as a realistic prospect. By reading individualism as an ethics of interpretation in the early modern period, we can open up questions of freedom and equality in our own.en_US
dc.description.sponsorship"I’m grateful to the Arts and Humanities Research Council for funding my research with a Doctoral Training Partnership (2014-17) and to the International Center for Humanities and Social Change at the University of California, Santa Barbara for a Dissertation Fellowship (2017-18)." -- Acknowledgementsen
dc.publisherUniversity of St Andrews
dc.titleSelf-given law : individualism as an ethics of interpretation in Ben Jonsonen_US
dc.contributor.sponsorArts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)en_US
dc.contributor.sponsorUniversity of California, Santa Barbara. International Center for Humanities and Social Changeen_US
dc.type.qualificationnamePhD Doctor of Philosophyen_US
dc.publisher.institutionThe University of St Andrewsen_US
dc.rights.embargoreasonThesis restricted in accordance with University regulations. Print and electronic copy restricted until 30th April 2024en

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