Silenced voices/speaking bodies : female performance and cultural agency in the court of Anne of Denmark (1603-19)
McManus, Clare (1997) Silenced voices/speaking bodies : female performance and cultural agency in the court of Anne of Denmark (1603-19). PhD thesis, University of Warwick.
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Official URL: http://webcat.warwick.ac.uk/record=b1358369~S15
This study investigates the long-neglected cultural engagement of the court of Anne of
Denmark, consort of James VI and I, revising her historiographical representation in
the light of current gender theory.
Focusing upon the masque performances of the English Jacobean court, I examine the
genre's anomalous staging of Renaissance female performance and its contribution to
the emergence of a more general female performance. Through detailed analysis of
masque performances, I assess contemporary courtly attitudes towards female
masquing and the performative representation of the courtly woman. This study is
firmly interdisciplinary in its approach to female cultural production, investigating the
texts of performance, embroidery, dance, patronage and commissioning, and religious
and political engagement. This thesis breaks new ground in the detailed examination
of the aesthetics of masque performance as tools of social and political engagement.
This study decentres the anglocentricism prevalent in recent cultural criticism of the
Jacobean court. My first: chapter traces Anne's life and performance in both the
Danish and Scottish Renaissance courts, assessing the impact of these alternative
models upon her cultural engagement. Chapters two and three continue the analysis of
performance. The former discusses the danced performance of aristocratic identity and
the way in which this facilitates female masque performance; the latter relates the
performance of the female body in the major English Jacobean masques to
performance space, costume and scenery. Tracing the line of female performance
through the second decade of the seventeenth century, I analyse Robert White's
Cupid's Banishment, the final masque of Anne's career. This reading encapsulates my
discussion of female cultural agency through the autonomy of the Queen's court.
Recycling memories of earlier performances, Cupid's Banishment stages disparate
texts of female expressivity in a masque which contains perhaps the unique Jacobean
staging of the female masquing voice.
|Item Type:||Thesis or Dissertation (PhD)|
|Subjects:||D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain
H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
|Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH):||Great Britain -- History -- James I, 1603-1625, Anne, Queen, consort of James I, King of England, 1574-1619, Courts and courtiers -- Great Britain -- History -- 17th century, Masques, English -- History -- 17th century, Women in the performing arts -- Great Britain -- History -- 17th century|
|Official Date:||September 1997|
|Institution:||University of Warwick|
|Theses Department:||Centre for the Study of the Renaissance|
|Supervisor(s)/Advisor:||Chedgzoy, Kate ; Davidson, Peter, 1957-|
|Sponsors:||British Academy ; University of Warwick|
|Extent:||viii, 394 leaves|
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