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Drama, Theatre, and Identity in the American New Republic

Part of Cambridge Studies in American Theatre and Drama

  • Date Published: June 2008
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521066686


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About the Authors
  • Drama, Theatre, and Identity in the American New Republic investigates the way in which theatre both reflects and shapes the question of identity in post-revolutionary American culture. In this 2005 book Richards examines a variety of phenomena connected to the stage, including closet Revolutionary political plays, British drama on American boards, American-authored stage plays, and poetry and fiction by early Republican writers. American theatre is viewed by Richards as a transatlantic hybrid in which British theatrical traditions in writing and acting provide material and templates by which Americans see and express themselves and their relationship to others. Through intensive analyses of plays both inside and outside of the early American 'canon', this book confronts matters of political, ethnic and cultural identity by moving from play text to theatrical context and from historical event to audience demography.

    • A thorough discussion of individual plays, including plays written in the New Republic (1775–1825) and also a number of key British-written plays seen on American stages
    • Considers plays both inside and outside of the early American 'canon'
    • Provides a unique account of an American provincial theatre in Norfolk, Virginia previously undocumented
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    Product details

    • Date Published: June 2008
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521066686
    • length: 408 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 23 mm
    • weight: 0.6kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. American identities and the transatlantic stage
    Part I. Staging Revolution at the Margins of Celebration:
    2. Revolution and unnatural identity in Crevecoeur's 'Landscapes'
    3. British author, American text: The Poor Soldier in the New Republic
    4. American author, British source: writing revolution in Murray's Traveller Returned
    5. Patriotic interrogations: committees of safety in early American drama
    6. Dunlap's Queer Andre: versions of revolution and manhood
    Part II. Coloring Identities: Race, Religion, and the Exotic:
    7. Susannah Rowson and the dramatized Muslim
    8. James Nelson Barker and the stage American native
    9. American stage Irish in the Early Republic
    10. Black theater, white theater, and the stage African
    Part III. Theatre, Culture, and Reflected Identity:
    11. Tales of the Philadelphia theatre: Ormond, National performance, and supranational identity
    12. A British or an American Tar? Play, player, and spectator in Norfolk, 1797–1800
    13. After The Contrast: Tyler, civic virtue, and the Boston stage.

  • Author

    Jeffrey H. Richards, Old Dominion University, Virginia
    Jeffrey H. Richards is the author of Theater Enough: American Culture and the Metaphor of the World Stage, 1607–1789 (1991), and Mercy Otis Warren (1995), and has edited three other books. He has published articles in Early American Literature, William and Mary Quarterly, and other journals and collections. He has taught at the University of North Carolina, Duke University, and is currently Professor of English at Old Dominion University.

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