This essay analyses the use of idolatry in representations of desire in six Renaissance sonnet sequences (Petrarch, Sidney, Spenser, Drayton, Daniel and Shakespeare). Seeking to offer a fresh perspective on the relationship between idolatry, gender dynamics and auto-poetics, the article reviews the changes in the use of idolatrous imagery to argue that they indicate changes in the authorial priorities relating to representations of desire and the writing self. (pp. 377-394).
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