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An infinite variety of appropriations in American TV drama

Serial Shakespeare explores the dissemination and reassemblage of Shakespeare’s plays in contemporary media culture, regarding the way this taps into but also transforms his preferred themes, concerns and constellations of characters. The appropriations discussed include isolated citations in Westworld and The Wire, a typology of the first female president modelled on figures of female sovereignty, as well as a discussion of what one might call a specifically Shakespearean dramaturgy in Deadwood and The Americans. By proposing a reciprocal exchange between the early modern plays and contemporary serial TV drama, the book focusses on the transhistoric and transmedial dialogue a revisitation of the Bard entails. The readings consider the Shakespeare text again, from a different perspective, but also address the fact that his text comes back to us again, from the past. The book claims that serial TV drama keeps appropriating Shakespeare to give voice to unfinished cultural business regarding the state of the American nation because both share the sense of writing in and for a period of interim. Given that the Bard continues to write and read America, what the book draws into focus is how both scriptwriters and cultural critics can, by repurposing him, come up with narratives that are appropriate to our times.

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Veep, Homeland, and Scandal
Elisabeth Bronfen

the first female president is open-ended. More is potentially still to come regarding the countersovereignty each of these anti-heroines embodies, even if the TV shows themselves have aired their final season. Seriality is, furthermore, at play in that, as in House of Cards , all the other TV dramas of the second wave continue to revolve around a first female president. As though cognisant of each other, they seem to be trying out different narrative variations on a thematic concern common to all of them. In that the first female president keeps returning, her

in Serial Shakespeare
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A series of first female presidents from Commander in Chief to House of Cards
Elisabeth Bronfen

his Lady, and, indeed, in the final season of House of Cards , the appropriation of this tragedy is explicitly stated. 4 After a confrontation with Claire, in which Annette Shepherd was not able to sway the first female president of the United States to sign a deregulation bill that would profit her foundation, she voices her frustration to her son, Duncan: ‘I know that expression. She can’t decide if she’s Lady Macbeth or Macbeth.’ 5 It is precisely this uncertainty which makes the resuscitation of one of Shakespeare’s most conflicted queens in House of

in Serial Shakespeare
Author: Zoë Thomas

Women Art Workers constitutes the first comprehensive history of the network of women who worked at the heart of the English Arts and Crafts movement from the 1870s to the 1930s. Challenging the long-standing assumption that the Arts and Crafts simply revolved around celebrated male designers like William Morris, this book instead offers a new social and cultural account of the movement, which simultaneously reveals the breadth of the imprint of women art workers upon the making of modern society. Thomas provides unprecedented insight into how women – working in fields such as woodwork, textiles, sculpture, painting, and metalwork – navigated new authoritative roles as ‘art workers’ by asserting expertise across a range of interconnected cultures so often considered in isolation: from the artistic to the professional, intellectual, entrepreneurial, and domestic. Through examination of newly discovered institutional archives and private papers, and a wide range of unstudied advertisements, letters, manuals, photographs, and calling cards, Women Art Workers elucidates the critical importance of the spaces around which women conceptualised alternative creative and professional lifestyles: guild halls, exhibitions, homes, studios, workshops, and the cityscape. Shattering the traditional periodisation of the movement as ‘Victorian’, this research reveals that the early twentieth century was a critical juncture at which women art workers became ever more confident in promoting their own vision of the Arts and Crafts. Shaped by their precarious gendered positions, they opened up the movement to a wider range of social backgrounds and interests, and redirected the movement’s radical potential into contemporary women-centred causes.

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Emer Nolan

finished with all that, with history and martyrs and fields … being, as I believed, on the brink of daring emancipation.4 Mary Robinson, on her election as the first female President of Ireland in 1990, hailed the women of Ireland in particular – ‘mná na ­hÉireann’ – who, in choosing a liberal, feminist candidate, ‘instead of rocking the cradle [had] rocked the system’; Irish people, she said, had ‘stepped out from the faded flags of the Civil War and voted for a new Ireland’.5 Some thirty years after O’Brien, Robinson too associates the liberation of Irish women – and

in Five Irish women
Sonja Tiernan

, the Campaign for Homosexual Law Reform. The Campaign group comprised mainly law students, and they secured their first legal advisor among Norris’s colleagues at Trinity College. Mary McAleese, then Reid Professor of Law and later President of Ireland, served as their legal advisor from 1975–79. McAleese’s successor, Mary Robinson, was also appointed as Reid Professor of Penal Legislation, constitutional and criminal law, and the law of evidence, and became the first female President of Ireland. Norris sought and received the support of established politicians and

in The history of marriage equality in Ireland
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Zoë Thomas

and the other women were not to be invited to the dinner that evening, and wrote to them taking issue with this, that the following year, four women Academicians were finally invited to dine with the men. The Times reported that after dinner that night Hermes enjoyed a ‘thoroughly masculine cigar’.10 Looking at this now from the distance of the twenty-first century it is sobering that the election of the first female President was only announced in December 2019 (painter and printmaker Rebecca Salter). In 1972, Joan Hassall became Master of the Art Workers’ Guild

in Women art workers and the Arts and Crafts movement
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Appropriation, dislocation, and crossmapping
Elisabeth Bronfen

) of one drug lord leads to the coronation of his violent successor. The two chapters at the centre of the book make use of the pathos formula of the female ruler to discuss the fascination and anxiety that female sovereignty poses in relation to a crisis in American democracy regarding the question of legitimate and illegitimate power. The crossmapping of a series of first female presidents with a typology of queenship in Shakespeare’s plays begins in Chapter 3 with Beau Willimon’s Gothic political thriller, House of Cards , because of its explicit references

in Serial Shakespeare
Jack Holland

audiences or receive critical acclaim. That, in itself, is significant. Veep , for example, prospered primarily on the critical acclaim front, winning awards even as audience figures remained modest. A fast-paced comedy, Veep tells the story of America’s first female president and vice president, Selina Meyer. The show focuses on the daily in-fighting of political life in Washington DC and the often less-than-strategic plays at work. It could not contrast more starkly with the Machiavellian three-dimensional chess depicted in House of Cards and the benevolent self

in Fictional television and American Politics
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Ireland, German reunification and remaking Europe
Mervyn O’Driscoll

escape the Irish recession. In German–​Irish relations, 1996 was an annus mirabilis. The focal theme for the Frankfurt Book Fair that year was ‘Ireland and its Diaspora’.41 According to a German opinion poll, Germans identified the Irish as their favourite European neighbours.42 Kohl opened the fair on 1 October 1996 in conjunction with the first female president of Ireland, Mary Robinson, and the Irish poet and playwright who won the Noble Prize for Literature in 1995, Seamus Heaney. This represented the best of new and old Ireland. On the following day, Kohl

in Ireland, West Germany and the New Europe, 1949– 73