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Jacobean Visions: Webster, Hitchcock, and Google Culture

Alan Taylor

This stridently interdisciplinary study builds on recent postmodern advances in theatre, film, and media studies – in areas of identity, gender, and narrative – to argue for a realignment of cinema’s own dissembling urban ironist, Alfred Hitchcock, within the Jacobean dramaturgical lineage. In defence, the study juxtaposes revitalized texts, such as Webster’s The White Devil (1612) and Hitchcock’s newly restored films, primarily Vertigo (1958), that, since the 1980s, have powerfully resonated as totemic limit texts with present day audiences. Comparative analysis of such titles builds to a contextual consideration of the vertiginous trends in new media technologies that have also, since the 1980s, beguiled users to fashion themselves as cyber observers, rhetors, Avatars and performers within the contemporary Jacobean panspectron environment.
Contents: Jacobean Drama – Renaissance Theatre – Hollywood Cinema – Visual Culture – Defamiliarisation – Cyberspace – Webster – Hitchcock – Stewart – New Media.