Introduction 1. A Canterbury Tale 2. Fetching Gentry from the University 3. Commencing M.A.: Acquaintances, Friends, and Connections 4. A Poet's Life in London 5. Lord Strange and Thomas Walsingham 6. Fortune Turns Base 7. A Trim Reckoning 8. The Dead Shepherd 9. Marlow Lost and Found Appendix: Transcriptions and Translations of Selected Documents References Index
Constance Brown Kuriyama is Professor of English at Texas Tech University. She is the author of Hammer or Anvil: Psychological Patterns in Christopher Marlowe's Plays, coeditor of A Poet and a Filthy Play-maker: New Essays on Christopher Marlowe, and translator and editor of The Intimate Charlie Chaplin.
"In this more speculative life of Marlowe, Kuriyama provides insightful details into English education, politics, and religion during the Renaissance."-Library Journal, May 2002 "Kuriyama has written a smart 'life' shot through with learning-a timely look at the most notorious early modern 'badboy' and his reputation."-Studies in English Literature, Spring 2003 "Although Kuriyama devotes plenty of space to the writer's posthumous progress, ... the real value of her book lies in the prevailing skepticism with which she treats her subject: the documentary evidence and the conspiracy theories favored throughout the past century."-Michael Caines, Times Literary Supplement, 20 September 2002 "Double agents, barroom brawls, counterfeit coins, paid informants, hired henchmen, intelligence networks spanning foreign locales, and dashing gents sent on clandestine missions for Her Majesty's secret service-descriptions from the most recent James Bond film? No, just some of the disputed details from Constance Brown Kuriyama's new biography of Christopher Marlowe... My own sense is that the actual 'facts' of the poet and playwright's life lie somewhere between the wild speculations of Marlowe's more imaginative biographer's and Kuriyama's necessary and important corrective to them."-Robert Sawyer, South Atlantic Review, Summer 2003 "Constance Brown Kuriyama's new book on Christopher Marlowe offers a refreshing counter to some of the more speculative and conspiracy-theory oriented works of literary biography on the young playwright. In her methodological introduction she presents a candid and honest overview of the demands and pitfalls of biographical writing and illustrates some of the dangers for Marlowe scholarship of valorizing a documentary-based approach without considering the immediate context of chosen primary materials... Kuriyama's book is clearly presented with chapters structured around successive stages of Marlowe's personal development... as a readable introduction to the playwright's life this book offers students a highly commendable combination of both primary and secondary material."-Matthew Woodcock, Sixteenth Century Journal "Christopher Marlowe: A Renaissance Life is unlike any biography of Marlowe that I know. It is an indispensable sourcebook as well as a biography. Constance Brown Kuriyama's authoritative book includes documents that have never been reprinted before."-Maurice Charney, Rutgers University "It is not easy to write a temperate biography of a young man reputed to be 'intemperate and of cruel hart,' but Constance Brown Kuriyama does just that. With cool reason and fresh research, she throws water onto the conspiratorial fire that today surrounds Marlowe's life and death, and in the process she makes a splash of her own. The Marlowe she constructs is a more complex and humane historical figure than the one we have inherited. At the center of her narrative is the shift that occurred late in Marlowe's life, a shift reflected in the diminution of his tragic heroes: recognizing that it was impossible to be the superman he had put on the stage, he became resentful, angry, and finally explosive."-Patrick Cheney, author of Marlowe's Counterfeit Profession: Ovid, Spenser, Counter-Nationhood