Ben Jonson, Renaissance Dramatist
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Ben Jonson, Renaissance Dramatist by Sean McEvoy
Book DescriptionThis new guide to the English renaissance's most erudite and yet most street-wise dramatist strongly asserts the theatrical brilliance of his greatest plays in performance, then and now. It traces the sources of that phenomenon to Jonson's vision of himself as a poet in the Roman tradition, and to his commitment to the sane and progressive ideals of humanism in a city where a rampant free-market and political authoritarianism made life conflicted, dangerous, and yet darkly, hilariously absurd. In his best plays, all of these forces are crafted into formal structures glittering with wit and provocation. Ben Jonson, Renaissance Dramatist integrates all of Jonson's major plays into the milieu of the turbulent years which produced them, and analyses the way each work examines the issues and challenges of those years: money, power, sex, crime, identity, gender, the theatre itself. It offers a lucid guide to the competing critical views of a playwright who is far more than the obverse of his friend and rival William Shakespeare, and it explains in detail how the undoubted power and energy of these plays in modern performance should be the touchstone of their quality to both critic and reader. The plays discussed include the early Comedies, the Roman Tragedies (Sejanus and Catiline), Volpone, Epicoene, The Alchemist, Bartholomew Fair and The Devil is an Ass. Key Features *The book is an up-to-date introduction to all the major plays, covering the major criticism from a variety of critical perspectives *Ben Jonson's skill as a writer of brilliantly theatrical drama is emphasised throughout *Each play is securely and informatively placed in its literary and historical context *There is a lively account of how the plays have worked on stage in recent productions
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780748623020
(216mm x 138mm x 11mm)
Imprint: Edinburgh University Press
Publisher: Edinburgh University Press
Publish Date: 24-Apr-2008
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Sean McEvoy
Ben Jonson, Renaissance Dramatist, Hardback (April 2008)» View all books by Sean McEvoy
This new guide to the English renaissance's most erudite and yet most street-wise dramatist strongly asserts the theatrical brilliance of his greatest plays in performance, then and now.
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Author Biography - Sean McEvoy
Sean McEvoy teaches English at Varndean College, Brighton and is a visiting lecturer on the Shakespeare MA course at Royal Holloway, University of London. He is the author of Shakespeare: The Basics (Routledge, 2000; second edition 2006) and William Shakespeare's 'Hamlet': A Sourcebook (Routledge, 2006).
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