Thursday, June 21, 2018

Fernandez on Winston, "Lawyers at Play"

Over at JOTWELL's Legal History Section, Angela Fernandez (University of Toronto Law) has posted an admiring review of Lawyers at Play: Literature, Law, and Politics at the Early Modern Inns of Court, 1558-1581 (Oxford University Press, 2016), by Jessica Winston (Idaho State University). Here's a taste:
Winston’s book argues that the interconnections among literature, law, and politics at the Inns of Court are best explained by the increase in law-related positions in the growing administrative state in early modern England and the connection contemporaries made between literary skills and fitness for these jobs. Lawyers at Play elegantly traces the way that a group of individual men at the Inns in the 1550s and 1560s used the skills they learned at grammar school in poetry-writing and in translating plays and other works to recommend themselves for those new positions. Rather than focusing on the literary stars of the Inns from the 1590s and 1600s such as William Shakespeare, Winston shifts the focus to an earlier time period. These relatively unknown individuals, unknown at least to those who are not literary scholars of Renaissance England, set the stage, as it were.
Read on here.

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