Course Convenor: Dr Deana Rankin
explores the connections between the rise of London as a metropolis and the
flourishing of English drama in the Renaissance and Restoration. It examines
how the stage shows the city; how, as the city evolves, urban space is
repeatedly represented and problematized for the entertainment of its citizens.
It does so by way of engaging with selected theoretical readings on the city
and public space.
We will read six
pairs of plays (one play per week) which open up questions of commerce, gender,
city limits, liminal space, underbellies and architecture in the urban
PLEASE READ AS MANY OF THE PLAYS LISTED
BELOW AS YOU CAN. IT IS ESSENTIAL TO READ
THE FIRST SIX BEFORE THE BEGINNING OF TERM.
Many of the plays
are found in the following anthologies (often available second-hand). Otherwise
use any good edition (eg. Oxford Classics, New Mermaids, Revels). Kindle and
e-texts are also readily available on the web, but do make sure your supplement
them with some good annotations from a reputable edition.
- D. Bevington et al
(eds.) English Renaissance Drama: A
Norton Anthology (New York, 2002)
- A.F. Kinney (ed.) Renaissance
Drama: An Anthology of Plays and Entertainments (Oxford, 1999)
- D. Womersley (ed.) Restoration Drama: An Anthology ed.
- Thomas Dekker, The Shoemaker’s Holiday (1599);
- Ben Jonson, Bartholomew Fair (1614)
- Thomas Dekker and
Thomas Middleton, The Roaring Girl (1607-10);
- Ben Jonson, Epicoene or the Silent Woman (1609)
Marlowe, The Jew of Malta (1592);
- William Rowley,
Thomas Dekker, John Ford, The Witch of
- William Wycherley, The Country Wife (1675);
- Sir George Etherage, The Man of Mode (1676)
- Aphra Behn, The Rover (1677);
- William Congreve,The Way of the World (1700)
- George Farquhar, The Beaux’ Strategem (1707);
- Susannah Centlivre,
The Busie Body (1709)
- John Gay, The Beggar’s Opera (1728)
Essential to read before term starts:
While this deals
mainly with modern urban theatre, it introduces some of the key theoretical
questions which we will address with regard to early modern theatre.
You might also want to borrow one of the
following from a library and explore some of the theory in advance:
Gaston, The poetics of space, trans.
Maria Jolas (Boston, 1994
Gary and Watson, Sophie (eds) The
Blackwell City Reader (Oxford, 2010)
Henri, Writings on cities (Oxford,