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Memory and Forgetting in English Renaissance Drama
Shakespeare, Marlowe, Webster

£23.99

Part of Cambridge Studies in Renaissance Literature and Culture

  • Date Published: July 2009
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521117357

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About the Authors
  • Engaging debates over the nature of subjectivity in early modern England, this fascinating and original study examines sixteenth- and seventeenth-century conceptions of memory and forgetting, and their importance to the drama and culture of the time. Garrett A. Sullivan, Jr discusses memory and forgetting as categories in terms of which a variety of behaviours - from seeking salvation to pursuing vengeance to succumbing to desire - are conceptualized. Drawing upon a range of literary and non-literary discourses, represented by treatises on the passions, sermons, anti-theatrical tracts, epic poems and more, Shakespeare, Marlowe and Webster stage 'self-recollection' and, more commonly, 'self-forgetting', the latter providing a powerful model for dramatic subjectivity. Focusing on works such as Macbeth, Hamlet, Dr Faustus and The Duchess of Malfi, Sullivan reveals memory and forgetting to be dynamic cultural forces central to early modern understandings of embodiment, selfhood and social practice.

    • Considers the conception of memory in the work of three major Renaissance playwrights; Shakespeare, Marlowe and Webster
    • The only full-length monograph on this subject to focus particularly on forgetting
    • Will appeal to a wide range of readers interested in early modern drama, Shakespeare, the history of the body, and the history and philosophy of the self
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    Reviews & endorsements

    '… well-researched and well-written …' The Times Literary Supplement

    'Memory and Forgetting in English Renaissance Drama will interest not only those who also address the intellectual history of memory or subjectivity, but those interested in the early modern body, issues of gender, or performance studies and theater history. Sullivan's meticulous and imaginative scholarship and his original approach provide invaluable instruction to anyone interested in Renaissance drama.' The Shakespeare Newsletter

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    Product details

    • Date Published: July 2009
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521117357
    • length: 196 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 11 mm
    • weight: 0.3kg
    • contains: 1 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Acknowledgements
    Introduction: planting oblivion
    1. Embodying oblivion
    2. 'Be this sweet Helen's knell, and now forget her': forgetting and desire in All's Well That Ends Well
    3. 'If he can remember': spiritual self-forgetting in Doctor Faustus
    4. 'My oblivion is a very Antony'
    5. Sleep, conscience and fame in The Duchess of Malfi
    Coda: 'wrought with things forgotten'
    Notes
    Index.

  • Author

    Garrett A. Sullivan, Pennsylvania State University
    Garrett A. Sullivan, Jr is Associate Professor of English at Pennsylvania State University. A recipient of a National Endowment of the Humanities/Folger Shakespeare Library long-term fellowship, he is the author of The Drama of Landscape: Land, Property, and Social Relations on the Early Modern Stage, is on the editorial board for Renaissance Drama, and is Associate Editor of Shakespeare Studies. He has published articles on Shakespeare, Marlowe, Marston, Spenser and others in a number of journals including ELH, Shakespeare Quarterly and Renaissance Drama, and has contributed to The Cambridge Companion to English Literature, 1500–1600 (1999) and The Cambridge Companion to Christopher Marlowe (2004).

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