Performing Race and Torture on the Early Modern Stage
Routledge, 2008 - 174
Performing Race and Torture on the Early Modern Stage provides the first sustained reading of Restoration plays through a performance theory lens. This approach shows that an analysis of the conjoined performances of torture and race not only reveals the early modern interest in the nature of racial identity, but also how race was initially coded in a paradoxical fashion as both essentially fixed and socially constructed. An examination of scenes of torture provides the most effective way to unearth these seemingly contradictory representations of race because depictions of torture often interrogate the incongruous desire to substitute the visible and manipulable materiality of the body for the more illusive performative nature of identity. In turn, Performing Race and Torture on the Early Modern Stage challenges the long-standing assumption that early modern conceptions of race were radically different in their fluidity from post-Enlightenment ones by demonstrating how many of the debates we continue to have about the nature of racial identity were engendered by these seventeenth-century performances.
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Edward Ravenscroft's address “ To the Reader ” in his rewriting of Titus Andronicus gives voice to a discomfort with Shakespeare's construction of the revenge tragedy . In fact , he claims “ ' tis the most incorrect and indigested piece ...
This story exists without comment from Chiron and Demetrius , and Muly and his family are never mentioned again in the course of Titus Andronicus . And yet this brief mention of the existence of a fair biracial baby , who can be a stand ...
Titus Andronicus , or the Rape of Lavinia has a sharp undercurrent of literal ( and explicit ) language , as is evidenced in the revised title . This rewriting becomes clear early in the play when Titus's two sons , Quintus and Martius ...
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