Jane Grogan's Celebrating Mutabilitie: Essays on Edmund Spenser's Mutabilitie Cantos
has won two awards from the International Spenser Society: The Isabel Maccaffrey award for best book or article (Andrew Zurcher's chapter in Grogan's book), and honourable mention given to Grogan's own paper in the same volume.
The Isabel McCaffrey Award, named after the distinguished author of Spenser’s Allegory: The Anatomy of Imagination
(Princeton, 1976), is given in alternating years to the best book or the best article written during the preceding two-year span.
Honorable mention for this year’s award went to Jane Grogan for “After the Mutabilitie Cantos.” In naming Grogan’s essay, the judges wrote: “This lovely and thrilling essay reads over the shoulders of Yeats and Heaney as they read Spenser. In defining Spenser as an important poetic and political model for his reluctant twentieth-century successors, Grogan's smart, insightful readings of this anachronic triad take on the thorny and important question of how we can (if we can) reconcile the humanist poet with his execrable politics. The essay is not only about Spenser's own paradoxical performance as vatic colonist—it's about what Spenser has come to mean to two of the greatest poets of modern Ireland, and about what Spenser has come to mean through those two poets. And, most of all, it's about the continuities among those three kinds of historical meanings.”
The winner of the 2012 McCaffrey Award is Andrew Zurcher for “The Printing of the Mutability Cantos.” Of this essay, the judges wrote: “Philology and book history mingle in a sophisticated and compelling analysis of the publication history of the Mutability Cantos and its implications for interpreting the poem. This essay combines the best of traditional scholarship with theoretical concerns. We delight in its concise yet accessible immersion of readers in the printing-house and its practices; in its sure-handed negotiation of the interchanges between manuscript culture and print production; and in the Sherlockian powers of deduction that guide the reader through the confusion sown in Matthew Lownes' shop by the arrival of Mutabilitie. Zurcher's direction of his evidence to address the most basic of our questions about Mutabilitie Cantos—what kind of "parcell" is it?—gives a newly satisfying center for assessing the cantos’ relationships to the six completed books.”
Both essays appear in the volume Celebrating Mutabilitie,
edited by Jane Grogan, from Manchester University Press, reviewed in the current issue of SpR.