Search results for: marriage-performance-and-politics-at-the-jacobean-court

Marriage Performance and Politics at the Jacobean Court

Author : Kevin Curran
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Marriage, Performance, and Politics at the Jacobean Court constitutes the first full-length study of Jacobean nuptial performance, a hitherto unexplored branch of early modern theater consisting of masques and entertainments performed for high-profile weddings. Scripted by such writers as Ben Jonson, Thomas Campion, George Chapman, and Francis Beaumont, these entertainments were mounted for some of the most significant political events of James's English reign. Here Kevin Curran analyzes all six of the elite weddings celebrated at the Jacobean court, reading the masques and entertainments that headlined these events alongside contemporaneously produced panegyrics, festival books, sermons, parliamentary speeches, and other sources. The study shows how, collectively, wedding entertainments turned the idea of union into a politically versatile category of national representation and offered new ways of imagining a specifically Jacobean form of national identity by doing so.

Renaissance Shakespeare Shakespeare Renaissances

Author : Martin Procházka
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Selected contributions to the most prestigious international event in Shakespeare studies, the Ninth World Shakespeare Congress (2011), represent major trends in the field in historical and present-day contexts. Special attention is given to the impact of Shakespeare on diverse cultures, from the Native Americans to China and Japan.

The Life of William Shakespeare

Author : Lois Potter
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The Life of William Shakespeare is a fascinating and wide-ranging exploration of Shakespeare's life and works focusing on oftern neglected literary and historical contexts: what Shakespeare read, who he worked with as an author and an actor, and how these various collaborations may have affected his writing. Written by an eminent Shakespearean scholar and experienced theatre reviewer Pays particular attention to Shakespeare's theatrical contemporaries and the ways in which they influenced his writing Offers an intriguing account of the life and work of the great poet-dramatist structured around the idea of memory Explores often neglected literary and historical contexts that illuminate Shakespeare's life and works

Bodies Speech and Reproductive Knowledge in Early Modern England

Author : Sara D. Luttfring
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This volume examines early modern representations of women’s reproductive knowledge through new readings of plays, monstrous birth pamphlets, medical treatises, court records, histories, and more, which are often interpreted as depicting female reproductive bodies as passive, silenced objects of male control and critique. Luttfring argues instead that these texts represent women exercising epistemological control over reproduction through the stories they tell about their bodies and the ways they act these stories out, combining speech and physical performance into what Luttfring calls 'bodily narratives.' The power of these bodily narratives extends beyond knowledge of individual bodies to include the ways that women’s stories about reproduction shape the patriarchal identities of fathers, husbands, and kings. In the popular print and theater of early modern England, women’s bodies, women’s speech, and in particular women’s speech about their bodies perform socially constitutive work: constructing legible narratives of lineage and inheritance; making and unmaking political alliances; shaping local economies; and defining/delimiting male socio-political authority in medical, royal, familial, judicial, and economic contexts. This book joins growing critical discussion of how female reproductive bodies were used to represent socio-political concerns and will be of interest to students and scholars working in early modern literature and culture, women’s history, and the history of medicine.

The Year of Lear

Author : James Shapiro
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"Shapiro shows how the tumultuous events in England in 1606 affected Shakespeare and influenced three of his greatest tragedies written that year: King Lear, Macbeth, and Antony and Cleopatra"--

Anna of Denmark and Henrietta Maria

Author : Susan Dunn-Hensley
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This book examines how early Stuart queens navigated their roles as political players and artistic patrons in a culture deeply conflicted about the legitimacy of female authority. Anna of Denmark and Henrietta Maria both employed powerful female archetypes such as Amazons and the Virgin Mary in court performances. Susan Dunn-Hensley analyzes how darker images of usurping, contaminating women, epitomized by the witch, often merged with these celebratory depictions. By tracing these competing representations through the Jacobean and Caroline periods, Dunn-Hensley peels back layers of misogyny from historical scholarship and points to rich new lines of inquiry. Few have written about Anna’s religious beliefs, and comparing her Catholicism with Henrietta Maria’s illuminates the ways in which both women were politically subversive. This book offers an important corrective to centuries of negative representation, and contributes to a fuller understanding of the role of queenship in the English Civil War and the fall of the Stuart monarchy.

Shakespeare and the Politics of Nostalgia

Author : Yuichi Tsukada
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In 1603, Queen Elizabeth I died and King James I inherited the English throne. During James's reign, England continued to hark back to Elizabeth, comparing him with his predecessor – not always in a way that was either flattering or pleasing to James. Critics have traditionally assumed that Shakespeare avoided involving himself in this discourse. In this study of Shakespeare's Jacobean plays, however, Yuichi Tsukada demonstrates that, far from not involving himself in the phenomenon of nostalgia for Elizabeth, Shakespeare interacted closely with retrospective writings on Elizabeth and illuminated the complex politics behind the nostalgia. Based upon close readings of Macbeth, Antony and Cleopatra, Coriolanus, Cymbeline and Henry VIII, together with a range of plays by Shakespeare's contemporaries, including Thomas Heywood, Thomas Dekker, George Chapman, John Marston, Thomas Middleton and Ben Jonson, the book traces the ongoing cultural negotiation of the memory of Elizabeth. Yuichi Tsukada offers fresh insights into enigmatic aspects of Shakespeare's Jacobean drama. For instance, what was the original significance of the two contentious prophecies – 'none of woman born' and the march of Birnam Wood – in Macbeth? Or that of the seemingly out-of-place triumphal procession of Volumnia near the tragic end of Coriolanus? Although her memory recurred in all forms of discourse throughout the first decade of James's reign, the impact of this cultural undercurrent on Shakespeare's Jacobean drama has been ignored or underestimated. Shakespeare and the Politics of Nostalgia reveals the unnoticed richness of Shakespeare's Jacobean drama by focusing on the growing cultural and political nostalgia for England's dead queen.


Author : James Shapiro
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1606: William Shakespeare and the Year of Lear traces Shakespeare's life and times from the autumn of 1605, when he took an old and anonymous Elizabethan play, The Chronicle History of King Leir, and transformed it into his most searing tragedy, King Lear. 1606 proved to be an especially grim year for England, which witnessed the bloody aftermath of the Gunpowder Plot, divisions over the Union of England and Scotland, and an outbreak of plague. But it turned out to be an exceptional one for Shakespeare, unrivalled at identifying the fault-lines of his cultural moment, who before the year was out went on to complete two other great Jacobean tragedies that spoke directly to these fraught times: Macbeth and Antony and Cleopatra. Following the biographical style of 1599, a way of thinking and writing that Shapiro has made his own, 1606: William Shakespeare and the Year of Lear promises to be one of the most significant and accessible works on Shakespeare in the decade to come.

Gender and Diplomacy

Author : Roberta Anderson
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The book series "Diplomatica" of the Don Juan Archiv Wien researches cultural aspects of diplomacy and diplomatic history up to the nineteenth century. This second volume of the series features the proceedings of the Don Juan Archiv's symposium organized in March 2016 in cooperation with the University of Vienna and Stvdivm fÆsvlancm to discuss the topic of gender from a diplomatic-historical perspective, addressing questions of where women and men were positioned in the diplomacy of the early modern world. Gender might not always be the first topic that comes to mind when discussing international relations, but it has a considerable bearing on diplomatic issues. Scholars have not left this field of research unexplored, with a widening corpus of texts discussing modern diplomacy and gender. Women appear regularly in diplomatic contexts. As for the early modern world, ambassadorial positions were monopolized by men, yet women could and did perform diplomatic roles, both officially and unofficially. This is where the main focus of this volume lies. It features sixteen contributions in the following four "acts": Women as Diplomatic Actors, The Diplomacy of Queens, The Birth of the Ambassadress, and Stages for Male Diplomacy. Contributions are by Wolfram Aichinger | Roberta Anderson | Annalisa Biagianti | Osman Nihat Bişgin | John Condren | Camille Desenclos | Ekaterina Domnina | David García Cueto | María Concepción Gutiérrez Redondo | Armando Fabio Ivaldi | Rocío Martínez López | Laura Mesotten | Laura Oliván Santaliestra | Tracey A. Sowerby | Luis Tercero Casado | Pia Wallnig

The Golden Age

Author : Elizabeth Rogers
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This volume investigates the diverse applications and conceptions of the term ‘The Golden Age’. The phrase resonates with the theme of nostalgia, which is popularly understood as a wistful longing for the past, but which also denotes homesickness and the unrecoverability of the past. While the term ‘Golden Age’ typically conjures up idealised visions of the past and gestures forward to utopian visions of future golden ages, the idea of nostalgia is suggestive of a discontented present. The Golden Age and nostalgia are therefore related ideas, but are also partly in conflict with one another, as many nostalgic sentiments are not idealised, and may indeed be dark, ironic or self-aware. There are, of course, many other ways to characterise the relationship between the Golden Age and nostalgia, and the tension between the two can produce myths and romantic idylls, or, in religious terms, images of pre-lapsarian innocence, or dogmas relating to values associated with childhood. The Golden Age is also often used to refer to specific, respected periods of cultural production in all kinds of literature and visual media. Indeed, nearly every period, genre, nation, and cultural form has some kind of mythic, often illusory, Golden Age against which it is defined, and in which nostalgia often plays a part. This collection interrogates the notion of the Golden Age and its connection to feelings of nostalgia from a range of interdisciplinary perspectives, with a strong focus on the relationship between word and image. It will interest scholars working on the subject of the Golden Age/nostalgia, particularly in English literature, film studies, comics studies, history, and the fine arts.

Performing the Renaissance Body

Author : Sidia Fiorato
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The volume analyses the concept of the “body” in the Renaissance period and its articulations and interpretations both in the legal field and the theatre. The body emerges as a site of regulation, shaped by social and political ideologies and specific networks of power, as well as a site of resistance to the codification of individual identity and the medium for its re-assertion in strict connection to the concept of the juridical persona.

Shakespeare and Contemporary Theory

Author : Neema Parvini
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A complete critical introduction to New Historicist and Cultural Materialist approaches that have dominated contemporary Shakespeare theory, as well as alternative new directions.

Staging Spectatorship in the Plays of Philip Massinger

Author : Joanne Rochester
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In Staging Spectatorship in the Plays of Philip Massinger, Joanne Rochester examines examples of on-stage spectatorship in three plays by Massinger, head playwright for the King's Men from 1625 to 1640. Focusing on the specific form of metatheatrical inset in each play-plays-within in The Roman Actor, masques-within in The City Madam, and the titular miniature portrait of The Picture - she analyzes Massinger's assumptions about interpretation, perception and spectator response.

Sex and Satiric Tragedy in Early Modern England

Author : Gabriel A. Rieger
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Drawing upon recent scholarship in Renaissance studies regarding notions of the body, political, physical and social, this study examines how the satiric tragedians of the English Renaissance employ the languages of sex - including sexual slander, titillation, insinuation and obscenity - in the service of satiric aggression. There is a close association between the genre of satire and sexually descriptive language in the period, author Gabriel Rieger argues, particularly in the ways in which both the genre and the languages embody systems of oppositions. In exploring the various purposes which sexually descriptive language serves for the satiric tragedian, Rieger reviews a broad range of texts, ancient, Renaissance, and contemporary, by satiric tragedians, moralists, medical writers and critics, paying particular attention to the works of William Shakespeare, Thomas Middleton and John Webster

Drama and the Transfer of Power in Renaissance England

Author : Martin Wiggins
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The state is at its most volatile when supreme power changes hands. This book studies five such moments of transfer in the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, from Henry VIII to the English Revolution, pazying particular attention to the political function and agency of drama in smoothing the transition. Masques and civic pageants served as an art form by which incoming authority could declare its power, and subjects could express their willing subordination to the new regime. The book contains vivid case studies of these dramatic works, some of which have never before been identified, and the circumstances for which they were written: the use of London street theatre in 1535 to promote Henry VIII's arrogation of Royal Supremacy; the aggressively Protestant court masque of 1559 which marked the accession of Elizabeth I, and the censorship which resulted when the same mode of dramatic discourse spread to more plebeian stages; the masques and entertainments of James I's initial year on the English throne, through which the new Stuart dynasty asserted its legitimacy and individual courtiers made their bids for influence; and the formal coronation entry to London, furnished with dramatic pageants, which London paid for but Charles I refused to undertake. The final chapter describes how, in 1642, a very different incoming regime planned to ignore drama altogether, until some surprisingly contingent circumstances forced its hand.

England and Spain in the Early Modern Era

Author : Óscar Alfredo Ruiz Fernández
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The early 17th century was a time of great literature the era of Cervantes and Shakespeare but also of international tension and heightened diplomacy. This book looks at the relations between Spain under Philip III and Philip IV and England under James I in the period 1603-1625. It examines the essential issues that established the framework for diplomatic relations between the two states, looking not only at questions of war and peace, but also of trade and piracy. Óscar Alfredo Ruiz Fernández expertly argues that the diplomatic relationship was vital to the strategic interests of both powers and also played a highly significant role in the domestic agendas of each country. Based on Spanish and English archival sources, England and Spain in the Early Modern Era provides, for the first time, a clear picture of diplomacy between England and Spain in the early modern era.

Shakespeare and Judgment

Author : Kevin Curran
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Ranging widely across law, aesthetics, religion, and philosophy, this book offers the first account of the place of judgment in Shakespearean dramaShakespeare and Judgment gathers together an international group of scholars to address for the first time the place of judgment in Shakespearean drama. Contributors approach the topic from a variety of cultural and theoretical perspectives, covering plays from across Shakespeare's career and from each of the genres in which he wrote. Anchoring the volume are two critical contentions: first, that attending to Shakespeare's treatment of judgment leads to fresh insights about the imaginative relationship between law, theater, and aesthetics in early modern England; and second, that it offers new ways of putting the plays' historical and philosophical contexts into conversation. Taken together, the essays in Shakespeare and Judgment offer a genuinely new account of the historical and intellectual coordinates of Shakespeare's plays. Building on current work in legal studies, religious studies, theater history, and critical theory, the volume will be of interest to a wide range of scholars working on Shakespeare and early modern drama. Key FeaturesProvides the first account of the place of judgment in Shakespearean dramaOffers a fresh perspective on the imaginative relationship between law, religion, and aesthetics in Shakespeare's playsModels new ways of putting the plays' historical and philosophical contexts into conversation.

Literature and Union

Author : Gerard Carruthers
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Literature and Union opens up a new front in interdisciplinary literary studies. There has been a great deal of academic work - both in the Scottish context and more broadly - on the relationship between literature and nationhood, yet almost none on the relationship between literature andunions. This volume introduces the insights of the new British history into mainstream Scottish literary scholarship. The contributors, who are from all shades of the political spectrum, will interrogate from various angles the assumption of a binary opposition between organic Scottish values andthose supposedly imposed by an overbearing imperial England. Viewing Scottish literature as a clash between Scottish and English identities loses sight of the internal Scottish political and religious divisions, which, far more than issues of nationhood and union, were the primary sources ofconflict in Scottish culture for most of the period of Union, until at least the early twentieth century.The aim of the volume is to reconstruct the story of Scottish literature along lines which are more historically persuasive than those of the prevailing grand narratives in the field. The chapters fall into three groups: (1) those which highlight canonical moments in Scottish literary Unionism -John Bull, "Rule, Britannia", Humphry Clinker, Ivanhoe and England, their England; (2) those which investigate key themes and problems, including the Unions of 1603 and 1707, Scottish Augustanism, the Burns Cult, Whig-Presbyterian and sentimental Jacobite literatures; and (3) comparative pieces onEuropean and Anglo-Irish phenomena.

The Oxford Handbook of Shakespearean Comedy

Author : Heather Hirschfeld
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The Oxford Handbook of Shakespearean Comedy offers critical and contemporary resources for studying Shakespeare's comic enterprises. It engages with perennial, yet still urgent questions raised by the comedies and looks at them from a range of new perspectives that represent the most recent methodological approaches to Shakespeare, genre, and early modern drama. Several chapters take up firmly established topics of inquiry such Shakespeare's source materials, gender and sexuality, hetero- and homoerotic desire, race, and religion, and they reformulate these topics in the materialist, formalist, phenomenological, or revisionist terms of current scholarship and critical debate. Others explore subjects that have only relatively recently become pressing concerns for sustained scholarly interrogation, such as ecology, cross-species interaction, and humoral theory. Some contributions, informed by increasingly sophisticated approaches to the material conditions and embodied experience of theatrical practice, speak to a resurgence of interest in performance, from Shakespeare's period through the first decades of the twenty-first century. Others still investigate distinct sets of plays from unexpected and often polemical angles, noting connections between the comedies under inventive, unpredicted banners such as the theology of adultery, early modern pedagogy, global exploration, or monarchical rule. The Handbook situates these approaches against the long history of criticism and provides a valuable overview of the most up-to-date work in the field.

Literature in Society

Author : Regina Rudaitytė
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The essays in this volume focus on the text-world dichotomy that has been a pivotal problem since Plato, implicating notions of mimesis and representation and raising a series of debatable issues. Do literary texts relate only to the fictional world and not to the real one? Do they not only describe but also perform and thus create and transform reality? Is literature a mere reflection/expression of society, a field and a tool of political manipulations, a playground to exercise ideological and social power? Herbert Grabes’ seminal essay “Literature in Society/Society and Its Literature”, which opens this volume, perfectly captures the essential functions of literature in society, whether it be Derridean belief in a revolutionary potential of literature, “the power of literature to say everything”, or Hillis Miller’s view of literature having the potential to create or reveal alternative realities; or, according to Grabes, the ability of literature “to offer to society a possibility of self-reflection by way of presenting a double of what is held to be reality”; and, last but not least, the ability of literature “to considerably contribute to the joy of life by enabling a particular kind of pleasure” – the pleasure of reading literature. The subsequent essays collected in this volume deal with complex relations between Literature and Society, approaching this issue from different angles and in various historical epochs. They are on diverse thematics and written from diverse theoretical perspectives, differing in scope and methodology.