Academic journal article Marlowe Studies

Fore-Words

Academic journal article Marlowe Studies

Fore-Words

Article excerpt

We are honored to publish the fourth issue of Marlowe Studies: An Annual in the year that marks the 450th anniversary of the author's birth in Canterbury. As always, we solicit essays on scholarly topics directly related to Marlowe and his role in the literary culture of his time. Especially welcome are studies of the plays and poetry; their sources; relations to genre; lines of influence; classical, medieval, and continental contexts; performance and theater history; textual studies; and Marlowe's professional milieu and place in early modern English poetry, drama, and culture.

For a fourth year, we offer essays that represent a cross-section of Marlowe studies as they now stand. Our first, by Bethany Packard, explores what has heretofore seemed a minor point in the study of Edward II, a reference to the game known as prisoner's base. Her paper explains that, on the contrary, the metaphor "serves as a lens for reading the paradoxically precocious character of Prince Edward, Edward II's fall, and the action of the play." Christine Edwards's analysis of imitation in Dido, Queen of Carthage explains Marlowe's constant awareness of his source text, the Aeneid, and how his incarnations of Dido and Aeneas "grapple for their own identity against an ever-present mythic backdrop." Lisa Hopkins, one of the world's leading authorities on Marlowe, examines his unexpected yet frequent yoking of two figures from classical epic and mythology, Aeneas and Actaeon, and how this connection helped him "question the idea of patrilineal transmission, . . . and for the cultural uses to which Marlowe's England put it." Annette Drew-Bear takes up the controversial issue of the reception and influence of Marlowe's plays by reading the tragedy Lust 's Dominion (first published 1657) against works such as Tamburlaine and Edward II and attempting to identify Marlovian elements therein, those that survived into the middle of the seventeenth century. John Christopher Frongillo convincingly argues for the importance of what has seemed to some as a somewhat gratuitous element in in the infrequently studied B-text of Doctor Faustus, the Duke of Vanholt scene, and suggests its literal and figurative centrality to the play. …

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