Shakespeare and the Theatre of Wonder

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2006-12-14
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
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Playwrights throughout history have used the emotion of wonder to explore the relation between feeling and knowing in the theatre. In Shakespeare and the Theatre of Wonder, T. G. Bishop argues that wonder provides a turbulent space, rich at once in emotion and self-consciousness, where the nature and value of knowing is brought into question. Bishop compares the treatment of wonder in classical philosophy and drama, and goes on to examine English cycle-plays, charting wonder's ambivalent relation to dogma and sacrament in the medieval religious theatre. Through extended readings of three of Shakespeare's plays - The Comedy of Errors, Pericles and The Winter's Tale - Bishop argues that Shakespeare uses wonder as a key component of his dialectic between affirmation and critique. Wonder is shown as vital to the characteristic self-consciousness of Shakespeare's plays as acts of narrative enquiry and renovation.

Table of Contents

List of abbreviations
Theory of wonder; theatre of wonder
Vision and vocation in the theatre of God
Compounding 'Errors'
Pericles; or, the past as fate and miracle
The Winter's Tale; or, filling up the graves
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

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