Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Impressive Shakespeare : sexual identity and impressing technologies in Shakespearean drama
Author: Newman, Harry Rex
ISNI:       0000 0004 2739 7298
Awarding Body: University of Birmingham
Current Institution: University of Birmingham
Date of Award: 2012
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Full text unavailable from EThOS. Thesis embargoed until 05 Jul 2087
Access from Institution:
This thesis examines the relationship between the sexual formation of identity and three ‘impressing technologies’ (sealing, coining and printing) in Shakespearean drama. In a number of plays, Shakespeare uses the ‘language of impression’ to create metaphors that analogise sexual activities such as kissing, defloration and impregnation with acts of imprinting. In doing so, I argue, he establishes a rhetorical nexus that contributes to the construction of his characters’ sexual identities. Following a chapter on relevant historical contexts, each chapter close reads a single Shakespeare play, focusing on its language of impression. Chapter 2 considers the representation of wounds as impressions in Coriolanus and tracks the development of the protagonist’s identity as a hyper-masculine war machine that stamps and is stamped. Chapter 3 investigates the role of sealing imagery in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, a play which subverts the patriarchal figuration of women as impressionable wax to be transformed by the imprints of men. Chapter 4 analyses the recurring metaphor of counterfeit coining in Measure for Measure, a trope that associates figures of state with their sexually transgressive subjects. And chapter 5 addresses the analogy of procreation with printing in The Winter’s Tale, arguing that this aspect of the play’s rhetoric influenced the composition of the preliminaries to Shakespeare’s First Folio. The thesis concludes by comparing the plays and exploring what it is that makes Shakespeare ‘impressive’.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: PN2000 Dramatic representation. The Theater ; PR English literature