On TV: Revisting Reign’s first season and the horrors of “historical fanfiction”, ahem

Though I don’t 100% agree with the author’s opinions, I definitely think that you can do so much better in learning (and actually enjoying!) history than “Reign”. I know it was never touted as historically accurate, and the author of this article acknowledges that *cough*fellow commenters please read the article more carefully*cough*, like them, I feel that it’s much better to be generally accurate to avoid disrespecting, defaming, and/or grossly oversimplifying historical events and figures and so even in historical fiction, I feel that the people behind them have a sort-of unspoken obligation to at least try to be accurate as far as they can go and allow for their fiction.

The Blog

Dear CW,

CANCEL REIGN NOW! Okay, seriously. I know it is highly improbable that someone with the power of canceling Reign would come across this article or take advice from me, but hey, it’d be just better if it got canceled and its budget went to a more deserving series. Even though I wouldn’t wrap my head around it too much since it seems like the type that gets canceled early (but we’ll see about that). Anyways, for the uninitiated, Reign is an American television series that focuses on Mary, Queen of Scots’ (Adelaide Kane) early life. And not only it is underwhelming in its very own self-designed guilty pleasure way, it is also plainly historically inaccurate.

This fits with the CW’s problem with adaptations, since it is adapted from HISTORY itself. Historical fiction is by no means always bad, but it’s definitely better if it retains at least a certain amount of factual history. But in true…

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A Formative Childhood? A Comparison of the Reigns of Mary Stuart and Elizabeth Tudor

A well-written, well-researched, and generally balanced article that seems to get more and more fascinating every time I reread it, especially as I get to know the intriguing and much-misunderstood figures of Mary, Queen of Scots and Elizabeth I of England. 🙂

The Creation of Anne Boleyn

Above: queens, cousins, rivals. Mary Stuart, queen consort of France and queen regnant of Scotland (left) and Elizabeth Tudor, queen regnant of England (right). Above: queens, cousins, rivals. Mary Stuart, queen consort of France and queen regnant of Scotland (left) and Elizabeth Tudor, queen regnant of England (right).

Conor Byrne is a history student at the University of Exeter whose research interests include gender, cultural, and social history. His excellent blog focuses on historical issues but also touches upon contemporary political and social events. 

Being a queen regnant in sixteenth-century Europe was no easy task. Prevailing misogynistic notions questioned whether women, as the inferior sex, had the right to rule over their male superiors. John Knox, the vehement Scottish Protestant preacher, opined in his The first blast of the trumpet against the monstrous regiment of women, attacking the rule of female monarchs such as Mary Tudor and Mary of Guise and published in 1558, that female rule was contrary to Biblical law. He bitterly concluded: ‘For their [women’s] sight in ciulie regiment, is but blindnes:…

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The Sisters Tudor: An Evolution in Evaluating Mary I and Elizabeth I

Interesting and well-written article…what do you guys think?

The Creation of Anne Boleyn

Mary and Elizabeth TudorThe following post is from Natalie Sweet, research assistant to Susan Bordo. She is the creator of Semper Eadem: An Elizabeth I Blog, and is currently at work on a book project that focuses on life within Abraham Lincoln’s White House (you can read a sample of that project here). The following is taken from a piece Natalie wrote in 2008, Two Tudor Monarchs: Analyzing Queenship in Early Modern England.

Scholarly literature on the two Tudor queens regnant, Mary I and Elizabeth I, suggests a number of past themes about their reigns. Authors once obsessed over Mary’s “bloody” moniker and Catholic faith, while others analyzed Elizabeth’s Protestant policies and her “Glorianna” status.  In the late twentieth century, however, the development of fields in women’s history and gender analysis signaled new ways in which to conceptualize the two sisters.  Obviously, historians had always recognized the fact that Mary…

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