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Tragedies from the Seams of Modernity

Readings of Five Plays from Kyd to Webster


Nils-Henje Redenius

This book is an invitation to embed Elizabethan and Jacobean Tragedy in its historical context: a time of change. Dwelling on Raymond William’s concept of culture as social process, the author reads a selected number of tragedies as being influenced by the conflicting epistemologies of the fading Middle Ages and a dawning modernity. The final catastrophe in Doctor Faustus, The Spanish Tragedy, King Lear, Sejanus his Fall and The Duchess of Malfi is located in the melting pot of rivalling discourses.
Contents: Five Elizabethan Tragedies on the Threshold of Modernity: Transgression in Damnation: Doctor Faustus – Challenging the Order from within: The Spanish Tragedy – The Decline of Society: King Lear – The Exposure of a Moral and Political Paragon: Sejanus his Fall – Double Tragedy in an Empty World: The Duchess of Malfi.