The Purpose of Playing: Shakespeare and the Cultural Politics of the Elizabethan Theatre
University of Chicago Press, 1996 - Literary Criticism - 227 pages
Part of a larger project to examine the Elizabethan politics of representation, Louis Montrose's The Purpose of Playing refigures the social and cultural context within which Elizabethan drama was created.
Montrose first locates the public and professional theater within the ideological and material framework of Elizabethan culture. He considers the role of the professional theater and theatricality in the cultural transformation that was concurrent with religious and socio-political change, and then concentrates upon the formal means by which Shakespeare's Elizabethan plays called into question the absolutist assertions of the Elizabethan state. Drawing dramatic examples from the genres of tragedy and history, Montrose finally focuses his cultural-historical perspective on A Midsummer Night's Dream.
The Purpose of Playing elegantly demonstrates how language and literary imagination shape cultural value, belief, and understanding; social distinction and interaction; and political control and contestation.
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
The Reformation of Playing
A Theatre of Changes
Anatomies of Playing
The Theatre the City and the Crowns
From the Stage to the State
The Power of Personation
The CrossPurposes of Playing
THE SHAPING FANTASIES OF A MIDSUMMER NIGHTS DREAM
Common terms and phrases
action actors audience authority beginning body Bottom called Cambridge century Chambers characters City civic claim collective comedy common concern containment context Corpus court courtly critical cultural desire difference discourse dominant drama Early Modern effect Elizabeth Elizabethan Elizabethan Stage England English Essex experience father forms gender gives Globe Hamlet hath Henry ideological imaginative interests John King late literary London Lord marriage Master material means Midsummer Night's Dream modes mother nature nevertheless Oberon observed particular performance perspective play play's players playhouse political popular position possible practice present Prince printed Privy production professional Queen reading recent relations relationship Renaissance representation represented resistance Richard royal seems sense sexual Shakespeare's shaped social society specific Stage structure studies subjects suggest theatre theatrical Theseus Thomas tion Titania traditional University Press wife woman women writing York