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Essays on The Spanish Tragedy

This book recognises the importance of the playwright and The Spanish Tragedy for the development of early modern theatre and beyond. It aims to familiarise readers with the play which, literally, set the stage for the Elizabethan revenge tragedy boom. The book revisits theories of revenge, and examines the play's latest editions, stage productions and screenplay adaptations. It takes the reader on a rewarding journey from Kyd's Proserpine to William Shakespeare's Prospero and brings personal editorial accounts on what it means to edit The Spanish Tragedy in the third millennium. The book argues that the lasting position of The Spanish Tragedy in the Low Countries is of interest from a politico-religious perspective. It advocates a shift in the critical approaches to The Spanish Tragedy, away 'from debating whether the play reflects Habsburg Spain or Renaissance Italy to considering how it portrays Mediterranean culture in relation to early modern England and its desire to play a role in the European colonial expansion'. The book further argues that The Spanish Tragedy, which has been regarded primarily as a 'blood and guts' revenge tragedy, was actually written to promote the Protestant politico-religious ethos, represented by Leicester, against Catholic Babylon/Spain under Philip II. Kyd combines aspects of the anti-Leicester tradition with elements of the Spanish Black Legend as expressed in Antonio Pérez's Las Relaciones in order to depict Spain under Philip II as the evil enemy of Protestant England.

Gender and conversion in the early modern Mediterranean
Eric Dursteler

one partner in a marriage annulled the relationship and all associated legal and economic responsibilities. 4 In an early modern Mediterranean that scholars from Fernand Braudel onwards have depicted as being characterised by ‘the ceaseless circulation’ of people, stories such as that of Francesco Mosca and his family were commonplace. 5 This was the age of the renegade, a term

in Conversions
Dynastic policy and colonial expansion in revenge tragedy
Clara Calvo

differentiated nations with an individualised national identity. 12 In spite of religious and racial differences, the Mediterranean in early modern Europe was, through trade and war, a theatre of contact and exchange. 13 Mediterranean countries shared a common cultural space that fostered familiarity and downplayed cultural alterity, at least amongst Christian states, but also, occasionally if the arts or commerce were involved, with the

in Doing Kyd
Dramatic and civil logics of the European state-form
Jacques Lezra

, and condensed within the familiar deforming figure of the pirate – is determining for how the so-called Mediterranean is imagined in British early modernity. Here, I stenographically trace out the translation system among these four lexicons, suggest that the relays between the notions of sovereignty, the ‘nation’ (in the sense of ‘national

in Transnational connections in early modern theatre
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Ladan Niayesh

finding its way into Spenserian epic, Sidneyan pastoral or even late Shakespearian tragicomedy and Miltonian poetry. The three plays grouped in this volume are early modern attempts at conquering that twilight zone in a context of expanding contacts with Muslim lands around the Mediterranean. ro ma nc e a nd con qu es t i n early m oder n engla nd ‘The structural core of all fiction’ for Northrop Frye, who sees it as a means to translate mythical archetypes into human experience,1 romance is also ‘a notoriously slippery category’, as Barbara Fuchs warns.2 The basic

in Three romances of Eastern conquest
Editor: Ladan Niayesh

This volume brings together three little-known works by key playwrights from the late sixteenth-century golden age of English drama. All three convey the public theatre’s fascination with travel and adventure through the popular genre of heroic romance, while reflecting the contemporaries’ wide range of responses to cross-cultural contacts with the Muslim East and the Mediterranean challenges posed by the Ottoman empire.

The volume presents the first modern-spelling editions of the three plays, with extensive annotations catering for specialised scholars while also making the texts accessible to students and theatregoers. A detailed introduction discusses issues of authorship, dates and sources, and sets the plays in their historical and cultural contexts, offering exciting insights on Elizabethan performance strategies, printing practices, and the circulation of knowledge and stereotypes related to ethnic and religious difference.

Victor Skretkowicz

self-expression and self-fulfilment, male self-interest, and the rewards of stoicism and self-discipline. Achilles Tatius takes his characters through a range of adventures as they move around the eastern Mediterranean. He focuses on how the lives of his hero and heroine are influenced by erotically driven men and women. Daphnis and Chloe gains strength by delicately drawing

in European erotic romance
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Gender and religious change in early modern Europe

Under the combined effects of the Protestant and Catholic Reformations within and pressure from the Ottoman Empire without, early modern Europe became a site in which an unprecedented number of people were confronted by new beliefs, and collective and individual religious identities were broken down and reconfigured. Conversions: gender and religious change in early modern Europe is the first collection to explicitly address the intersections between sexed identity and religious change in the two centuries following the Reformation. The varied and wide-ranging chapters in this collection bring the Renaissance 'turn of the soul' into productive conversation with the three most influential ‘turns’ of recent literary, historical, and art historical study: the ‘turn to religion’, the ‘material turn’, and the ‘gender turn’. Contributors consider masculine as well as feminine identity, and consider the impact of travel, printing, and the built environment alongside questions of genre, race and economics. Of interest to scholars of early modern history, literature, and architectural history, this collection will appeal to anyone interested in the vexed history of religious change, and the transformations of gendered selfhood. Bringing together leading scholars from across the disciplines of literary study, history and art history, Conversions: gender and religious change offers novel insights into the varied experiences of, and responses to, conversion across and beyond Europe. A lively Afterword by Professor Matthew Dimmock (University of Sussex) drives home the contemporary urgency of these themes, and the lasting legacies of the Reformations.

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Chronology: Productions of Shakespeare plays by the Citizens’ Theatre Company, 1970–2001
Willy Maley and Andrew Murphy

, March/April 1971. Director, Keith Hack; Designer, Keith Hack and Amanda Colin. Close Theatre production. Twelfth Night , May/June 1971. Director, Giles Havergal; Designer, Philip Prowse. Contemporary Mediterranean setting – Jeremy Blake doubling as Sebastian and Viola. 1971–72 Timon of Athens , May 1972

in Shakespeare and Scotland
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Matthew Dimmock

early as the seventeenth century, dramatists and writers had begun projecting back to earlier periods – especially the mid-sixteenth-century peak of Ottoman–Habsburg rivalry in the Mediterranean – using the convert and conversion to delineate the forces involved. The most celebrated example comes a little later, and usefully functions as a kind of afterword to the period covered by this volume: Mozart

in Conversions