By Jennifer C. Vaught
'Carnival and Literature in Early smooth England' explores the elite and renowned festive fabrics appropriated through authors in the course of the English Renaissance in quite a lot of dramatic and non-dramatic texts. even if historic documents of rural, city, and courtly seasonal customs in early glossy England exist in simple terms in fragmentary shape, Jennifer Vaught lines the sustained impression of fairs and rituals at the performs and poetry of 16th- and seventeenth-century English writers. She specializes in the various ways that Shakespeare, Spenser, Marlowe, Dekker, Jonson, Milton and Herrick included the carnivalesque of their works. extra, she demonstrates how those early sleek texts have been used - and misused - by means of later writers, performers, and inventors of spectacles, particularly Mardi Gras krewes organizing parades within the American Deep South. The works featured right here usually spotlight violent conflicts among contributors of other ranks, ethnicities, and religions, which the writer argues mirror the social realities of the time. those Renaissance writers spoke back to republican, egalitarian notions of liberty for the population with radical aid, ambivalence, or conservative competition. finally, the very important, folkloric size of those performs and poems demanding situations the suggestion that canonical works by means of Shakespeare and his contemporaries belong in simple terms to 'high' and never to 'low' tradition.
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Additional info for Carnival and Literature in Early Modern England
In my first chapter, “Grotesque Imperialists, Alien Scapegoats, and Feasting in Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus and The Jew of Malta and Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice,” I examine how these two dramatists appropriate carnivalesque materials that have enlivened the streets, the stage, and other entertainment venues over the past four centuries. Their plays include clowns and tricksters, mockery of Catholic or Lenten figures, masks, disguises, parades, and festive banquets. 72 In keeping with the early modern analogy between literary imitation and the bodily consumption of food, this chapter focuses in part on pronounced oral, gastronomic, yet sadistic dimensions in Doctor Faustus and The Jew of Malta.
As the Chorus further reports, Faustus is “glutted more with learning’s golden gifts” and “surfeits upon cursed necromancy” (24–5). 80). Faustus’s gluttony for knowledge and sovereignty befits the pronounced oral, gastronomical dimension of Marlowe’s play in which the playwright figuratively devours carnivalesque motifs characteristic of popular folk culture. ” In The Faust Myth: Religion and the Rise of Representation (New York: Palgrave, 2007), 63, David Hawkes describes the Faust legend as a myth originating in popular culture.
3 (1992): 511–23, in which he contends that Kemp in effect transformed morris dancing into a commercial venture. He further used the pamphlet he wrote about his nine day, solo morris dance from London to Norwich in February 1600 to present himself as one who courts “a figure of authority,” like the Lord Mayor, in each town he visits (514). At the end of his dancing marathon he appealed to “an affluent urban crowd” and accepted generous payment from viewers of his feat as if they were customers.
Carnival and Literature in Early Modern England by Jennifer C. Vaught