The precocious emergence of a sense of national consciousness in England in the sixteenth century has been widely debated in different fields, with literary scholars mostly focusing on Shakespeare’s handling of the English past in his histories. Investigation of literary representations of episodes and personalities from Roman history has received much less attention. The influence exerted by that emergent sense of national self-awareness resulted in modifications of the received accounts of Roman history along thematic lines that rendered the Roman past more compliant with English national identity. An analysis of seven extant Elizabethan and Jacobean plays featuring Julius Caesar shows how his character was rewritten as a symbolic archenemy of the country. This re-writing of Roman history might have offered, at least to a certain type of elite readership, an imaginative space in which a sense of national unity could be strengthened by way of contrast. This comparative discussion of the plays provides a fresh perspective on how past and present were conceptualized in early modern England.
|Titolo:||Re-Writing Julius Caesar as a National Villain in Early Modern English Drama|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2017|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||01.01 - Articolo su rivista|