Performing ‘Walter Ralegh’:The Cultural Politics of Sea Captains in late Elizabethan and Jacobean Drama

Jowitt, Claire (2019) Performing ‘Walter Ralegh’:The Cultural Politics of Sea Captains in late Elizabethan and Jacobean Drama. In: The Maritime World of Early Modern Britain. Maritime Humanities, 1400-1800: Cultures of the Sea . Amsterdam University Press. (In Press)

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Abstract

Walter Ralegh (c.1554-1618) was a pivotal cultural and political figure. Adventurer, courtier, poet, traitor, he was one of the most charismatic and controversial figures of the English Renaissance. This chapter is the first critical study of the ways in which ‘Ralegh’ was performed on page and stage, in a number of early modern plays that engage with maritime topoi. Through these plays the character of the pirate sea captain ‒ in this period a particularly mobile figure politically and culturally, as well as geographically ‒ is shown as a vehicle capable of expressing covert political allusions, or ‘glancings’ and ‘applications’ as they were known by contemporaries. This chapter focuses on the ways dramatists used sea captains to engage with key events and issues that ‘glance’ at Ralegh’s life, death, and beyond-the-grave influence. To differing degrees, and in contrasting ways, each of the plays under discussion offers a perspective on a man alternatively, sometimes simultaneously, seen as heroic or/and treasonous by his contemporaries, and whose actions and beliefs provoked intense and far-reaching debate about the leadership and political direction of the nation itself.

Item Type: Book Section
Faculty \ School: ?? LDC ??
Faculty of Arts and Humanities > School of History
Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 11 Feb 2019 09:30
Last Modified: 11 Feb 2019 09:30
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/69899
DOI:

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