A Cultural History
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Shakespeare's Caliban by Alden T. Vaughan
Book DescriptionAmong Shakespeare's numerous stage characters, probably none has been so variously interpreted as the 'savage and deformed slave' Caliban in The Tempest. For nearly four centuries, widely diverse writers and artists from around the world have found the rebellious monster an intriguing and useful signifier. He has been portrayed in the theatre and in literary criticism as - among other things - a fish, a tortoise, the missing link, an American Indian, and an African slave. He has also appeared extensively and diversely in poems by Browning, Auden, and Brathwaite among others, and in illustrations by Hogarth, Fuseli, Walter Crane, and other major artists. In the twentieth century, he has been widely adopted as a cultural icon, especially in the Caribbean, Latin America, and Africa: first as a symbol of imperialist North Americans, more recently as an emblem of colonised native populations. Shakespeare's Caliban looks first at the historical, etymological, literary, and folklore contexts in which Shakespeare created Caliban. The authors weigh the plausible intellectual influences of early Jacobean England and reach a tentative conclusion about what Shakespeare may have had in mind. The rest (and far larger part) of the book traces Caliban's evolution from his first appearance in 1611 to the present, with chapters on the major artistic genres in which Caliban has been interpreted, appropriated, and adapted: criticism, stage, painting, poetry, film, and sociopolitical literature. Shakespeare's Caliban relates the monster's changing incarnations to the cultural and intellectual forces that allowed him to reflect major trends - including romanticism, Darwinism, the late nineteenth-century Anglo-American rapproachment, and the Third World liberation movements after World War II.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780521458177
(228mm x 152mm x 18mm)
Imprint: Cambridge University Press
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publish Date: 28-May-1993
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Alden T. Vaughan
Shakespeare in America, Paperback (April 2012)
This book is a lively account of how American culture has embraced the English playwright and poet from colonial times to the present. It ranges widely, following the story of Shakespeare's reception in America from the scholarly - criticism, editions of the plays, and curricula - to the light-hearted - burlesques, musical comedies, and kitsch.
Transatlantic Encounters, Paperback (November 2008)» View all books by Alden T. Vaughan
Transatlantic Encounters examines the diverse origins and experiences of approximately 175 American Indians and Inuits who traveled to the British Isles before the American Revolution.
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