Academic journal article Medium Aevum

Interludes and Early Modern Society: Studies in Gender, Power and Theatricality

Academic journal article Medium Aevum

Interludes and Early Modern Society: Studies in Gender, Power and Theatricality

Article excerpt

Interludes and Early Modern Society: Studies in Gender, Power and Theatricality, ed. Peter Happé and Wim Hüsken, Ludus: Medieval and Early Renaissance Theatre and Drama 9 (Amsterdam and New York: Rodopi, 2007). 380 pp. ISBN 978-90-42-2303-1. euro76.00. A collection of fifteen critical essays on the English 'Interludes' introduced by Peter Happé (who also provides an essay on Skelton's Magnyjycence), and assembled according to the light that they shed upon three interwoven themes: gender, power, and theatricality. The first essay (Debax) serves as an introduction to the genre and its diversity, and thereafter a number of essays treat the theatricality of the interludes from uses of classical tragedy (Pincombe and Cavanagh) to comedy (Thomson); Mills's study of the Wit plays examines their contextual development and use of other theatrical traditions. Focusing primarily on gender is Forest-Hill's discussion of the interplay between and critique of stereotypes afforded by male actors playing female parts, and assessment of the role of females in audiences. Also concerned with gender are the essays of Godfrey, Hunt, and Dillon: on the representation of younger women, Katherine of Aragon and Godly Queen Hester, and Mary Tudor's coronation and Respublica, respectively. …

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