Spectacles of strangeness: imperialism, alienation, and Marlowe
Oriental barbarians, black magicians, homosexuals, African queens and kings, Machiavellian Christians, Turks, and Jews - for an English audience of the sixteenth century, these are marginal, unorthodox, and strange figures. They are also the central figures in the plays of Christopher Marlowe. In Spectacles of Strangeness, Emily C. Bartels focuses on Marlowe's preoccupation with "strangers" and "strange" lands, and his use - and subversion - of Elizabethan stereotypes. Setting Marlovian drama in the context of England's nascent imperialism, Bartels probes the significance of the alien as a vital presence on the Renaissance stage and within Renaissance society. Bartels further examines the reasons that Marlowe (himself a marginalized figure as playwright, and reputedly a homosexual, spy, and atheist) turned again and again to the subject. Bartels argues that what makes Marlowe's dramas so remarkable, important, and subversive is that he evokes these cultural stereotypes only to undermine them: to expose the circumscription of difference as a political strategy, designed to advance the self, state, and status quo over and against some "other." By interrogating Marlowe's works and their relation to England's imperialism, the author helps to explain why the "alien" was such a prominent figure in the Renaissance's theatrical and extra-theatrical discourses and how imperialism influenced the development of the early modern theater and the early modern state. Drawing on new historicist methodologies and recent assessments of colonialist discourse, Spectacles of Strangeness is a stimulating study of one of the most important figures in Renaissance literature and drama.
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Spectacles of Strangeness: Imperialism, Alienation, and Marlowe
Emily C. Bartels
Limited preview - 1993
Aeneas Aeneas's Aeneid Africa alien argued attempts B-text Bajazeth Barabas Barabas's barbarity becomes Bosco Bredbeck Callapine Calymath Cambridge Carthage Chicago Christian Christopher Marlowe Colonial colonialist conflict conjuration constructs critics cross-cultural cultural death defined demonization desire despite devil Dido Dido and Aeneas Dido's difference discourse display divine Doctor Faustus domination Drama early modern East Edward Elizabethan Elizabethan Theatre empire England English European example exploits Faustus's Ferneze figure Gaveston give Greenblatt Hakluyt heaven hell History Holinshed homoerotic homoeroticism Homosexuality imperialism imperialist incriminating insists Ithamore Jew of Malta king magic magician Marlovian Marlowe's plays Massacre at Paris means Mephastophilis Moors Mortimer murder nobles numbers Persia political Prologue Protestant queen Renaissance representations Scythian seems Self-Fashioning sexual Shakespeare Simon Shepherd sodomy soul spectacle Spenser stage Stephen Greenblatt stereotypes strange strategies subversive suggests Tambur Tamburlaine transgression Trojan Turkish Turks turn University Press unspeakable voice York Zenocrate