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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In chapter 3 , " When Race is Colored " I analyze two plays that do seem to emphasize the centrality of the semiotic significance of color for a raciala ized epistemology . Moving from an analysis of the semiotic significance of the ...
3 When Race is Colored Abjection and Racial Characterization in Titus Andronicus and Oroonoko While in chapter 2 I examined plays in which the performance of blackness was clearly not a function in the performance of racial alterity ...
Attempting to facilitate historical remembering , I have constructed this book in terms that are both historical and theoretical , while constantly questioning the relationship between the two . In chapter 2 , " A Matter that is No ...
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