Comparing men and times : the classical sources and the political significance of Ben Jonson's "Sejanus" and "Catiline" in early Jacobean and Restoration England
Alyo, Muhammed W. (1992) Comparing men and times : the classical sources and the political significance of Ben Jonson's "Sejanus" and "Catiline" in early Jacobean and Restoration England. PhD thesis, University of Warwick.
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Official URL: http://webcat.warwick.ac.uk/record=b1415141~S1
The primary objective of this thesis is to examine the interaction between drama and politics in Ben Jonson's two surviving tragedies, Sejanus and Catiline, during the early years of the Jacobean and Restoration periods. Jonson relied heavily on classical scholarship in writing his two extant tragedies, his stated reason being to convince the readers of their "truth of Argument". But Jonson, nevertheless, adapted his sources in an ingenious way that both suited his dramatic purposes and served to cast light on social and political realities in the England of his own day. For Jonson, as for many Renaissance historians, the past had meaning primarily because of its valuable lessons for the present and the future. Thus, one of my aims is to examine both the nature and the extent of Jonson's dependenceo n the classical sources which provided him with the historical stories and details that he dramatized in the two plays. SuccessiveE nglish governmentsi n the seventeenthc entury treated drama, especially that based on historical material, as a potentially dangerous medium for disseminating propaganda and for influencing public opinion against specific government policies. Therefore, part of this work will be devoted to discussing censorship regulations within early Jacobean and Restoration England, and to examining their effects both on Jonson and on the reception of his two tragedies. Each of the two plays is studied in the context of its historical sources in order to determine Jonson's method of adapting his sources as well as the extent of topicality that each play seems to provide, both on the Jacobean and the Restoration stage. The method adopted in this study is to place the two Roman tragedies within the contemporary setting for which they were originally intended and then within the context of the early Restoration period when the two plays are thought to have been revived.
|Item Type:||Thesis or Dissertation (PhD)|
|Subjects:||P Language and Literature > PR English literature|
|Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH):||Jonson, Ben, 1573?-1637. Sejanus his fall -- Criticism and interpretation, Jonson, Ben, 1573?-1637. Catiline his conspiracy -- Criticism and interpretation, Political plays, English -- History and criticism, Politics in literature|
|Institution:||University of Warwick|
|Theses Department:||Institute of Education|
|Supervisor(s)/Advisor:||Mulryne, J. R. ; Shewring, Margaret|
|Extent:||2 v. (xii, 366, 193 leaves)|
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