A few years ago I was lucky enough to hear the legendary English folk singer Shirley Collins perform. One of the songs she sang was & # 39; Awake, Awake & # 39; written by Thomas Deloney in 1580, but apparently forgotten until Ralph Vaughan Williams heard it singing in July 1909 from an older Herefordshire woman over 300 years, borne by countless voices, by the performance itself as an act of cultural memory.
I mention this because it is one of Katherine R. Larson's most important points The song thing in early modern England: song has a life that is more elusive and vital than the written word. And his volatility, his offense - his literal invisibility - has led him to be excluded from studying early modern culture in a way that is comparable to the obliteration of women a...
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