Shakespeare and Public Execution (Studies in Renaissance Literature No. 26)

Shakespeare and Public Execution (Studies in Renaissance Literature No. 26)

By: Charles Mitchell (author)Hardback

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This study demonstrates how Shakespeare utilized a strategy of manipulating the language and conventions of public execution, specifically in The Comedy of Errors, Titus Andronicus, Richard III, Measure for Measure, and The Tempest. It uses audience-reception theory and new historicism, as well as non-dramatic texts (popular literature and ballads) to demonstrate the knowledge and experiences of execution that the audiences of Shakespeare's time took with them to the theatre. With illustrations.

About Author

Dr. Charles Mitchell received his PhD in Theatre from the University of Colorado at Boulder. He is currently Assistant Professor at Loyola College, Baltimore. For two years, he was Managing Editor of On-Stage Studies, a peer-reviewed, annual theatre journal.


Preface; 1. Introduction; 2. London's Topography of Punishment; 3. Execution and the Marketplace in The Comedy of Errors; 4. Titus Andronicus and the "Death Speech"; 5. "Tis a Vile Thing to Die": Shakespeare's Death Row in Richard III; 6. Preparing for Death in Measure for Measure; 7. Still Harping on Execution in The Tempest; 8. Conclusion; Appendix A: Glossary of Common Execution Jargon; Appendix B: Psalm 51, The "Neck Verse"; Appendix C: Plays Known to Be Drawn from Famous Murders and Executions; Appendix D: Selected Titles of Goodnight Ballads in Circulation During Shakespeare's Career; Appendix E: Song from Mother Bombie; Bibliography; Index

Product Details

  • ISBN13: 9780773465534
  • Format: Hardback
  • Number Of Pages: 172
  • ID: 9780773465534
  • ISBN10: 0773465537

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