- Tapa dura: 256 páginas
- Editor: Sutton Publishing Ltd; Edición: Illustrated edition (24 de abril de 2001)
- Idioma: Inglés
- ISBN-10: 0750922397
- ISBN-13: 978-0750922395
- Valoración media de los clientes: Sé el primero en opinar sobre este producto
Kingdom for a Stage: Magicians and Aristocrats in the Elizabethan Theatre (Inglés) Tapa dura – Ilustrado, 24 abr 2001
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Reseña del editor
This book describes the role of Elizabeth I, the aristocratic patrons of the players' companies and the Elizabethan magus John Dee in the concept and design of the Elizabethan playhouse. The author has analysed drawings and archaeological materials which throw a completely new light on the concepts underlying the design of the theatres of Elizabeth London, relating Renaissance concepts of proportion and the mystery of creation to the world of aristocratic patronage. Her research has attracted powerful support from the Museum of London and the Science Museum, as well as from Mark Rylance, director of the Bankside Globe, and is certain to cause a stir in the Shakespearean world. The book offers a wide-ranging view of the nature of the Elizabethan theatre and its relationship to the Elizabethan world picture. As such it goes beyond anything currently available on the subject and will appeal to all those interested in Elizabethan theatre as historians, students of Shakespeare or students of theatre history. The debate about the site and size of e.g. the original Globe is constantly fuelled by new discoveries and speculations. Joy Hancox's research is receiving ever-growing support and in one way or another is going to influence the way people think about Shakespeare's theatre in the future.
Biografía del autor
Joy Hancox is the author of The Byrom Papers (Jonathan Cape, hb 1992; pb 1997), where she first proposed an interpretation of Elizabethan theatres based on magical and hermetic concepts.
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Yates' thesis, developed in her numerous writings, is that Renaissance Christian Neo-Platonism played an important role in the flowering of Elizabethan culture, in particular in the literature celebrating the Tudor dynasty and especially in the theatre. In Yates' "Theatre of the World" it is argued that classical architecture as expressed by Vitruvius inspired and guided the creation of the Elizabethan playhouse as promulgated by polymath/mage Dr. John Dee. Yates argument was strong but circumstantial. Hancox here fleshes out the circumstantial argument substantially by pointing out that there was a direct connection between Dee and the builder of the first Elizabethan playhouse (The Theatre), James Burbage, through his patron Leicester who was acting at the behest of the Queen herself. John Dee was Leicester's tutor and advisor. This is a much stronger argument than Yates' observations concerning the availability of the necessary ideas in Dee's library and publications. Hancox also points out that Dee returned to London from a provincial assignment when The Theatre was being reconstituted as the Globe Theatre and therefore would have been available to trouble-shoot the rebuilding.
The core point of Hancox book is her advocacy that the Byrom Collection drawings, which she introduced in a previous book, are primary sources for The Theatre's (and subsequently, the Globe's) design concept. No design or conceptual drawings have previously been located. Although Hancox arguments in this respect may seem tenuous or vague, the evidence she presents taken in the context of the esoteric philosophy, is nevertheless plausible. As such, the collection is a very important primary source worthy of further study.
Students of the western esoteric tradition will find this book very interesting. Hancox stops short of joining the Shakespeare authorship controversy but draws an extensive picture of how wide-spread Elizabeth's court's involvement was in supporting players and the theatre. There are also interesting speculations concerning the later courtiers and the Rosicrucian Enlightenment (to use Yates' term) which was for a time an important bridge to the Scientific Enlightenment and the central role that Frances Bacon may have played. This is a neglected period of history which bears importantly on Elizabethan/Jacobean/Carolinian culture.
It is not generally recognized by scholars outside of practical theatre work how important the Elizabethan theatre architecture was to the success of the drama of the period. The sections of this work decrying the lack of attention to the classical models available in these sources during the reconstruction of the modern London Globe are particularly poignant. Any actor who has performed Shakespeare in a theatre possessing the acoustics possible by virtue of the Vitruvian proportions (as I have), by comparison with architecture lacking them, knows what a vital issue this can be. If this were the only take away Kingdom for a Stage would be an important work.
Not only is each of the 10 chapters totally disconnected from and unrelated to earlier or later chapters, but one finds that even within each chapter, often any given paragraph is disconnected from the one just before and just after. The book's themes, if any, are completely impenetrable and defy any kind of coherent summation.
In a private collection somewhere are hundreds of pieces of cardboard covered with inscribed circles, triangles and hexagons. For no reason that is ever explained within the text, the author believes these drawings have some connection to Elizabethan astrologer John Dee, and to the layout of Elizabethan playhouses such as the Globe. But the book consists of little more than interminable digressions from this never-developed theme. Toward the end the author seems to be practicing free word association, to come up with new chapter topics and to fill out the manuscript to book length. Eventually she settles on poor old Sir Francis Bacon, who without a shred of evidence is proclaimed to be the bastard son of Queen Elizabeth and Robert Dudley, to have faked his own death, to have composed all of Elizabethan literature, and to have been secretly replaced at the age of 15 by a sinister space alien spy from the planet Mercury... no, I must have misread at least that last one.
Almost every discussion ends with an unanswered question at the end of an "investigation" which has started from nothing, gotten nowhere and had no result whatsoever. Yet a few pages or chapters later the "question" has become a certain conclusion, with nothing happening in the meantime.
There are quite a few books in print listing and giving brief biographies of dozens of supposedly charming "British eccentrics," who walk about for their entire adult lives in clothes made solely of cabbage leaves, or something even stranger. I can now suggest an entry for the next in that series.