Mock Kings in Medieval Society and Renaissance Drama

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More About This Textbook

Overview

King-led outlaw defiance, riotous lords of misrule, proud midsummer mock kings, and stately Inns-of-Court princes—in diverse ways all were reflections of the dominant social order from the medieval to early Stuart periods and, as this new book makes clear, all influenced the writings of Shakespeare and his contemporaries. Billington considers kingship in the light of contemporary accounts of elected kings in outlaw and rebel groups, and compares them with the phenomenon of festive mock kings. The result is a complex picture of interrelation between festive and more serious opposition to the dominant order, as well as the discovery of a midsummer mock-king play tradition. She then looks at the professional theater of the period, demonstrating that mock-king patterns form the structure of many scripted plays, and highlighting Shakespeare's genius in transforming such inherited structures into complex works of art.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780198119678
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 5/28/1991
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 5.63 (w) x 8.81 (h) x 0.89 (d)

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