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Title: The Shakespearean blush : body, colour, and emotion within material and dramatic culture
Author: Butler, Anita Marguerite
ISNI:       0000 0004 7963 9404
Awarding Body: King's College London
Current Institution: King's College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2019
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In this thesis I argue that the modern collocation - blush-pink-embarrassment - is not one that can be presumed to have made equal sense in Elizabethan and Jacobean England. This is because when Shakespeare was writing his plays, the word pink referred to a range of meanings that did not include colour, and the word embarrassment, as an expression of emotional feeling, did not enter the English vernacular until the later part of the seventeenth-century. The one constant in this triad of associative concepts between then and now is the blush. Using the blush as a lens and with Shakespeare as a major focus, I consider the difference that the absence of pink as a named colour, and embarrassment as a named emotion, makes to readings of selected episodes from drama produced for the early modern professional stage. In Chapter One, I present the blush as a mid-way agent for the body-mind equation and establish the blush as providing a method for exploring pink in its Shakespearean permutations in Chapter Two (cloth) and Chapter Three (a flower). In Chapter Four, I consider the gap that is left if we assume that a colour term was not yet coined yet I suggest that the 'birth' of pink-colour in drama may rest with John Marston and therefore I offer a pre-history for the colour pink. In the final chapter, I use the blush as a mode of enquiry for early modern embarrassment before the word entered the English vernacular in the Restoration. Overall, I adopt an anachronistic nexus of associations (blush-pink-embarrassment) to present a non-anachronistic study of distinct yet interrelated areas that are usually studied in isolation.
Supervisor: McMullan, Gordon Alexander ; Palmer, Patricia Ann Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available