The Popular Culture of Shakespeare, Spenser and Jonson

The Popular Culture of Shakespeare, Spenser and Jonson

by Mary Ellen Lamb
     
 

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Breaking new ground by considering productions of popular culture from above, rather than from below, this book draws on theorists of cultural studies, such as Pierre Bourdieu, Roger Chartier and John Fiske to synthesize work from disparate fields and present new readings of well-known literary works.

Using the literature of Shakespeare, Spenser and Jonson, Mary

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Overview

Breaking new ground by considering productions of popular culture from above, rather than from below, this book draws on theorists of cultural studies, such as Pierre Bourdieu, Roger Chartier and John Fiske to synthesize work from disparate fields and present new readings of well-known literary works.

Using the literature of Shakespeare, Spenser and Jonson, Mary Ellen Lamb investigates the social narratives of several social groups – an urban, middling group; an elite at the court of James; and an aristocratic faction from the countryside. She states that under the pressure of increasing economic stratification, these social fractions created cultural identities to distinguish themselves from each other – particularly from lower status groups. Focusing on Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night's Dream and Merry Wives of Windsor, Spenser's Faerie Queene, and Jonson's Masque of Oberon, she explores the ways in which early modern literature formed a particularly productive site of contest for deep social changes, and how these changes in turn, played a large role in shaping some of the most well-known works of the period.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
' ... sheds new light on some of the most curious aspects of early modern literature. The book will fascinate anyone interested in early modern literature and/or English folk culture.' - British Theatre Guide

" Lamb's study has been painstakingly researched...By providing a sense of the period's social complexity and class tensions she creates and provides an exciting revisitation of works that capture the thoughts and feelings of that time. This is a book that historians, students of popular culture, and literary scholars will find quite valuable and insightful." — Sixteenth Century Journal, Vol. XXXIX, No. 4, 2008

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780415288811
Publisher:
Taylor & Francis
Publication date:
08/28/2006
Series:
Routledge Studies in Renaissance Literature and Culture Series
Edition description:
1ST
Pages:
288
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.20(h) x 0.90(d)

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