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Title: Shakespeare and the politics of nostalgia : negotiating the memory of Elizabeth I on the Jacobean stage
Author: Tsukada, Yuichi
ISNI:       0000 0004 5921 2307
Awarding Body: King's College London
Current Institution: King's College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2015
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This thesis is the first book-length study that seeks to illuminate the relationship between the plays of Shakespeare and the phenomenon of nostalgia for Elizabeth I in the first decade of the reign of James I. Critics often cite Thomas Crammer's celebratory speech for the birth and christening of Elizabeth in Henry VIII, Shakespeare and John Fletcher's collaboration of 1613, as the starting point of the revival of interest in Elizabeth on the Jacobean stage in the assumption that, after eulogising Elizabeth for a brief nostalgic phase immediately after her death- a phase marked by the performance in 1604-06 of plays by Thomas Heywood and Thomas Dekker which feature Elizabeth as protagonists- Jacobean dramatists began to care less about the dead queen, and that nostalgia for Elizabeth did not reappear on stage until 1613. Accordingly, although the memory of Elizabeth recurred in other forms of discourse throughout the first decade of James's reign, pre-1613 drama has not been sufficiently examined against this cultural undercurrent. In this thesis. I seek to redress this critical oversight by resituating four Shakespearean plays composed between 1606 and 1610- Macbeth, Antony and Cleopatra, Coriolanus and Cymbeline- together with certain plays of this contemporaries, within the Jacobean discourse of nostalgia for Elizabeth. I analyse the politics of representing a diseased body politic (Chapter 1), a warlike queen (Chapter 2), a peace goddess (Chapter 3) and an imperilled princess (Chapter 4), illustrating the ways in which these representations engaged with the struggle for control of the memory of Elizabeth and both reflected and informed the complexity of contemporary political culture. These chapters illuminate both the sustained theatrical culture of nostalgia for Elizabeth and the extent to which that culture of nostalgia remained a focus for ideological negotiation and competition throughout the first decade of James's reign.
Supervisor: McMullan, Gordon Alexander ; Palmer, Patricia Ann Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available