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Seminar in Early Modern Drama

ENGL 776.301
instructor(s):
W 12-3:00 PM

This course will explore the relationship between the development of Early Modern dramatic genres and cultural mappings of space and place at a moment when England was redefining its status as a national entity in an evolving global system.� We will focus in particular on texts that are set in the Mediterranean region and that consequently examine England's constructions of North Africa and the Levant, as well as Spain, Italy, and Greece.� For dramatic texts we will focus on a range of travel and adventure plays and tragicomedies including The Battle of Alcazar, The Famous History of Sir Thomas Stukeley, The Fair Maid of the West, The Three English Brothers, Christian Turned Turk, The Renegado, The Sea Adventure, Fortune by Land and By Sea, Othello, Antony and Cleopatra, Pericles, The Tempest, and The Island Princess. We will also be examining some of the prose travel writing from the period including works by George Sandys, Henry Blount, and others; and we will be reading our dramatic and prose texts in relationship to the new scholarship by historians (such as Robert Brenner), cultural historians (such as Jerry Brotton), critical geographers (such as Denis Cosgrove) and world system theorists (such as Immanuel Wallerstein) on the Early Modern globe and England's place within it.

Members of the seminar, besides weekly participation in discussion, will be asked to complete three assignments, each aimed at providing training for a specific professional task. Each student will (1) write a 1200-word review of one of the theoretical or historical or critical books bearing on the subject of the course; each will (2) do a class report presented as if it were a twenty-minute conference paper; and each will (3) write a twenty-page critical essay that aspires to publication in a journal.�

There will be spaces for twelve participants in the seminar.�

Fulfills 1 & 5 requirements