The Topopoetics of Retirement in Katherine Philips and Lucy Hutchinson

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

Abstract / Description of output

This chapter explores the place of the poetics of retirement in the work of Katherine Philips and Lucy Hutchinson. The idea of retirement as a way of life counterposed to public engagement, as a leisured otium contrasted with negotium, is a commonplace of early modern culture. In the middle of the seventeenth century, in the political and military conflicts of the wars of the three kingdoms, retirement was also configured as exile, or an involuntary removal from the public sphere. A crucial consideration here is the fact that the contrasting evaluations of the meaning of retirement were gendered. An exploration of how Hutchinson and Philips articulated the experience of retirement allows us to see not only how women positioned themselves in relation to this cultural topos, but also how their writing became a way of making them both visible and audible within a cultural framework that might otherwise occlude them.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of Early Modern Women's Writing in English, 1540-1700
EditorsElizabeth Scott-Baumann, Danielle Clarke, Sarah C. E. Ross
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9780191892653
ISBN (Print)9780198860631
Publication statusPublished - 14 Jan 2023

Publication series

NameOxford Handbooks
PublisherOxford University Press

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • Katherine Philips
  • Lucy Hutchinson
  • engagement
  • retreat
  • civil wars
  • space
  • place
  • estate poetry
  • retirement


Dive into the research topics of 'The Topopoetics of Retirement in Katherine Philips and Lucy Hutchinson'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this