Othello: A Contextual History

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Cambridge University Press, 1996 M12 5 - 243 páginas
Shakespeare's Othello has exercised a powerful fascination over audiences for centuries with its intense portrayal of passionate love and destructive jealousy. This study is a major exercise in the historicization of Othello. Initially the author examines the early Jacobean context of the play, and the discourses which formed its writing. Circulating simultaneously in late Renaissance London were accounts of Mediterranean clashes between Turks and Venetians, treatises on the professionalization of England's military forces, depictions of North Africans and blackamoors, and narratives of jealous husbands who murdered their wives. In the centuries after 1604, productions of Othello stressed the contextual discourse that best reflected current cultural concerns. The first section examines these four sets of contemporary writings and demonstrates how they were embedded in the text of Othello. The following chapters trace Othello's history on stage or in film in England and the United States from the Restoration to the late 1980s. Each chapter highlights particular productions or performers to demonstrate how and why elements from Shakespeare's text were emphasized or repressed. In the Restoration, for example, Othello was a gentleman and an officer, his characterization shaped by actors who had served in King Charles' army. During the Victorian period, in contrast, the Moor's private role of devoted husband was privileged over his occupation. When Paul Robeson performed Othello in 1930 and 1943-44, race was highlighted as the play's central issue. Othello is thus revealed as a significant shaper and major reflector of cultural meanings, as it participated in a complex negotiation betweenactors, critics, audiences, and the culture at large.
 

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Contenido

Introduction
1
JACOBEAN CONTEXTS
11
Global discourse Venetians and Turks
13
Military discourse knights and mercenaries
35
Racial discourse black and white
51
Marital discourse husbands and wives
71
REPRESENTATIONS
91
Othello in Restoration England
93
William Charles Macready and the domestic Othello
135
Salvini Irving and the dissociation of intellect
158
The Ethiopian Moor Paul Robesons Othello
181
Orson Welles and the patriarchal eye
199
Othello for the 1990s Trevor Nunns 1989 Royal Shakespeare Company production
217
Conclusion
233
Index
238
Derechos de autor

Amateur versus professional the Delaval Othello
113

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