Prologues to Shakespeares Theatre
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Prologues to Shakespeares Theatre by Douglas Bruster
Book DescriptionThis eye-opening study draws attention to the largely neglected form of the early modern prologue. Reading the prologue in performed as well as printed contexts, Douglas Bruster and Robert Weimann take us beyond concepts of stability and autonomy in dramatic beginnings to reveal the crucial cultural functions performed by the prologue in Elizabethan England. While its most basic task is to seize the attention of a noisy audience, the prologue's more significant threshold position is used to usher spectators and actors through a rite of passage. Engaging competing claims, expectations and offerings, the prologue introduces, authorizes and, critically, straddles the worlds of the actual theatrical event and the 'counterfeit' world on stage. In this way, prologues occupy a unique and powerful position between two orders of cultural practice and perception. Close readings of prologues by Shakespeare and his contemporaries, including Marlowe, Peele and Lyly, demonstrate the prologue's role in representing both the world in the play and playing in the world. Through their detailed examination of this remarkable form and its functions, the authors provide a fascinating perspective on early modern drama, a perspective that enriches our knowledge of the plays' socio-cultural context and their mode of theatrical address and action.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780415334426
(216mm x 138mm x 16mm)
Publisher: Taylor & Francis Ltd
Publish Date: 18-Nov-2004
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Douglas Bruster
Shakespeare and the Power of Performance, Paperback (December 2010)
This book demonstrates the artful means by which Shakespeare responded to the competing claims of acting and writing in the Elizabethan era.
Everyman and Mankind, Hardback (September 2009)
Everyman and Mankind are morality plays that mark the turn of the medieval period to the early modern, with their focus on the individual. Both plays are modernised here with full on-page commentaries, a detailed, illustrated introduction and all the scholarly qualities associated with Arden editions
Drama and the Market in the Age of Shakespeare, Paperback (January 2005)
Douglas Bruster's provocative study of English Renaissance drama explores its links with Elizabethan and Jacobean economy and society.
Prologues to Shakespeares Theatre, Paperback (November 2004)» View all books by Douglas Bruster
This remarkable study shows how prologues ushered audience and actors through a rite of passage and how they can be seen to offer rich insight into what the early modern theatre was thought capable of achieving.
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