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Thesis (Master's)

University of Iceland > Hugvísindasvið > Meistaraprófsritgerðir - Hugvísindasvið >

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1946/32631

  • Iconic 16th Century Queens: Anne Boleyn, Elizabeth I and Mary Queen of Scots as Portrayed in Contemporary Historical Fiction by Women
  • Master's
  • Anne Boleyn, Elizabeth I and Mary Queen of Scots can be considered as the proto-feminist figures of the Tudor era. They affected politics and religion and made a permanent mark on history. Elizabeth was a successful sovereign and overcame considerable obstacles due to the fact that she was a female monarch, while Anne Boleyn, her mother, and Mary, her cousin, were less successful. Because they defied the norm, Anne and Mary paid the ultimate price; ending their lives on the block. Historians have not always treated these women fairly and they do not agree as to the extent of these women’s guilt in plots and murders that took place in their lives. Anne and Mary’s history has never been told from their point of view. The historical novel becomes a powerful tool where these women are given a voice and their history is presented from different viewpoints. Writers of the women’s historical novel can write about the lives of women and offer explanations for events that have not been fully explained by the historical record.
    This essay begins by discussing the historical novel and demonstrating how the historical novel is a combination of fact and fiction and how it can become a medium that tells a story about people and events, as well as explaining how the women’s historical novel gives the women of history a voice they have never had. Further, by introducing Anne Boleyn, Elizabeth I and Mary Queen of Scots, the essay explores the main events in their lives, their influence on politics, religion and how they affected history.
    The essay goes on to analyse various portrayals of Anne Boleyn, Elizabeth I and Mary Queen of Scots in modern literature with focus on their characteristics, relationships and how main events in their lives are portrayed. It discusses both novels that stick mainly to historical facts and novels that are more fiction than facts. Finally, this essay explains how these portrayals differ by analysing how historical facts and fiction are intertwined, concluding by comparing some different portrayals of the queens in question.

  • May 3, 2019
  • http://hdl.handle.net/1946/32631

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