Metadrama and the informer in Shakespeare and Jonson
Informers Jonson, Ben, Shakespeare, William,
Every man in and out : metadramatic ideals and harsh realities.
Sympathy for the informer ; Iago, Volpone and other metadramatic authors.
'Masters both of arts and lies' : metadrama and the informer in Poetaster and Sejanus.
Falstaff, Hal, Cariolanus : metadrama and the authority of policy.
'Three cranes, Mitre, and mermaid men' : metadramatic self-deprecation and authority in Bartholomew Fair.
'Ministers of fate' : politics oversight and ideal authorities.
Onstage overviews ; metadrama and the information market.
Explores disturbing connections between authors and informers revealed in the metadrama of Shakespeare and Jonson.
Have you ever wondered what was really going on in the inner-plays, secret overhearing, and tacit observations of early modern drama? Taking on the shadowy figure of the early modern informer, this book argues that far more than mere artistic experimentation is happening here. In case studies of metadramatic plays, and the devices which Shakespeare and Jonson constantly revisit, this book offers critical insight into intrinsic connections between informers and authors, discovering an uneasy sense of common practice at the core of the metadrama, which drives both its self-awareness and its paranoia. Drama is most self-revealing at these moments where it reflects upon its own dramatic register: where it is most metadramatic. To understand their metadrama is therefore to understand these most seminal authors in a new way.Key Features
- Offers a fresh insight into the internal workings and motivations of Shakespeare and Jonson's dramatic structures
- Opens a new window on the ambitions, concerns, and fears of these important authors
- Enhances historical understanding of the structures of authority within which the drama was produced, and the place of the informer in those structures