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A Poetics of Implosion: Typology and Allegory in American Puritanism

  • Journal of Humanities, Seoul National University
  • 2005, (53), pp.149-171
  • Publisher : Institute of Humanities, Seoul National University
  • Research Area : Humanities > Other Humanities

Woosung Kang 1

1서울대학교

Candidate

ABSTRACT

Unlike traditional genre conception, the typology in American Puritanism capitalizes on the literal as well as symbolic connection between biblical figures and the historical events of colonial New England. Intent on the allegorical implication of typology, I explore poetic achievements of Puritan poets like Anne Bradstreet and Edward Taylor, especially the 'epistemological skepticism' of their meditative poems. Allegory, often suppressed by strong typological drive of Puritan hermeneutics, turns out to facilitate the moment of implosion within the structure of that very tight typology. Bradstreet's silently-defiant female personae and Taylor's ever-doubting writership both represent the poetics of allegorical implosion in the fiction of Puritan typology. Allegorical indeterminacy in the 17th century Puritan poetics marks the triumph of the literary in American literatures against religious literalism.

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