ENGL 314(F) Renaissance Drama (Same as Theatre 337)

English drama began as a communal religious event only to be reinvented as a peculiarly lurid-and profitable-form of popular entertainment. In this course we will study plays and masques written between the opening of the first commercial theater in London in 1576 and the official closing of the theaters by parliamentary decree in 1642. We will focus on the sensational aspects of these works-their preoccupation with revenge, black magic, sexual ambiguity and grotesque violence-and also on their technical virtuosity. Authors will include Christopher Marlowe, Thomas Kyd, William Shakespeare, Ben Jonson, John Webster and Cyril Tourneur. Format: discussion. Requirements: several short exercises, two 5- to 7-page papers and a final exam. Prerequisites: a 100-level English course, except 150. Enrollment limit: 25 (expected: 25). (Pre-1700)