Download Protestantism and Drama in Early Modern England by Adrian Streete PDF

By Adrian Streete

Containing distinctive readings of performs via Shakespeare, Marlowe and Middleton, in addition to poetry and prose, this publication presents a huge old and important reassessment of the connection among early smooth Protestantism and drama. interpreting the complicated and painful shift from overdue medieval non secular tradition to a society ruled via the tips of the Reformers, Adrian Streete provides a clean knowing of Reformed theology and the illustration of early glossy subjectivity. via shut research of significant thinkers comparable to Augustine, William of Ockham, Erasmus, Luther and Calvin, the ebook argues for the profoundly Christological concentration of Reformed theology and explores how this manifests itself in early glossy drama. relocating past questions of authorial 'belief', Streete assesses Elizabethan and Jacobean drama's engagement with the demanding situations of the Reformation.

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In Protestant theology, man and God are placed at opposite and ­opposing ends of the metaphysical spectrum. Once the subject examines himself or herself in relation to the magnificent and austere Protestant deity, he or she is almost inevitably found wanting. The consequence of this move, argues Sinfield, is a strange kind of paradox. ’3 In one sense, uncertainty becomes constitutive of subjectivity itself, not least because it is the very thing that animates self-examination and the centrality of ­interior scrutiny: ‘We approach God by learning how distant, through our wickedness, we are from him.

He observes: Because authority, including the authorization of discourse itself, was no longer given, as it were, before the writing and reading began, the act of representation was turned into a site on which authority could be negotiated, disputed, or reconstituted. 99 Weimann detects a gradual cultural downgrading of the authority of the model in favour of the copy, a move from a relatively static conception of imitatio where the primacy of the model is unchallenged to a much more fluid conception of mimesis or representation where the claims of the copy are beginning to take precedence .

The attack upon the apparatus of mediation began as an attempt to counter the material basis of Catholicism but it was soon translated into a much more nebulous cultural memory of what Catholicism’s various mediatory apparatus might have signified. In order to counter ‘false’ Catholic memory and to emulate Christ ‘correctly’, Protestantism had to refigure how that emulation might take place. ’18 Operating as it does as a midway point between heaven and hell, purgatory is clearly a place and subject intimately linked to the idea of mediation.

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