Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: https://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.731434
Title: James Shirley and the Restoration Stage
Author: Crowther, Stefania
ISNI:       0000 0004 6496 7560
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2017
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Abstract:
James Shirley is a distinctly Caroline playwright: his first play was performed in the year of Charles I’s coronation, 1625, and his last the year of the outbreak of civil war in 1642. Yet his importance extends beyond the era in which he worked as a professional playwright. As one among a handful of dramatists whose work was staged regularly by the new playing companies after the theatres reopened in 1660, he is an important figure in the development of new modes of theatre. Despite having had more of his plays produced on the Restoration stage than Shakespeare did, scholarship on his significance to Restoration drama has been remarkably scant. This thesis investigates the significance of Shirley in the Carolean period, tracing the adaptations of Shirley throughout the reign of Charles II. It uses Shirley as a case study to investigate transitions in theatrical practice before 1642 and after 1660, paying attention also to the continuities. This thesis asks why Shirley’s plays were considered suitable by the managers of the Restoration theatre companies who staged them: the King’s Company under Sir Thomas Killigrew, the Duke’s Company under Sir William Davenant, George Jolly’s ‘Nursery’ group, performing at Hatton Garden, and the Red Bull Players, an illegal, pre-Restoration group. It also explores the ways in which Shirley’s plays were adapted in response to the changed social and political climate after 1660, including textual amendments made and the addition of new prologues. It concludes by asking why Shirley’s reputation declined so sharply in the long eighteenth century while Shakespeare’s came to pre-eminence, by comparing the Restoration treatment of his plays with those of Shakespeare.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Arts and Humanities Research Council ; University of Warwick
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.731434  DOI: Not available
Keywords: PR English literature
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