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Ralegh's history of her world

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Lady Elizabeth Ralegh, the wife of Sir Walter, was active on various legal and political fronts during the 1620s in England and, in her engagement with the past, her activities can be understood as those of a historian. Her use of oral depositions in Chancery, memory, ▜lost▝ documents, ▜personal▝ documents, and above all her application of past texts to current circumstances existed in complex interrelation with traditional male historical practice. Ralegh's various initiatives (including the battle to ▜restore in blood▝ the Ralegh name) attempted to right the wrongs of the past, indeed to rewrite the past. In a culture in which ▜the rule that barreth women to discourse of matteres much more barreth them to judge of questiones ore considerations of state▝, the author discusses the ways in which Ralegh effected and legitimised her apparent desire to ▜discourse▝ and her right to ▜judge▝, and the responses to this desire

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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: March 1, 2005

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