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Restoration Theatre and Crisis$
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Susan J. Owen

Print publication date: 1996

Print ISBN-13: 9780198183877

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198183877.001.0001

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Tory Plays: The Contradictions of Royalism in Crisis

Tory Plays: The Contradictions of Royalism in Crisis

(p.200) Chapter 7 Tory Plays: The Contradictions of Royalism in Crisis
Restoration Theatre and Crisis


Oxford University Press

This chapter starts the exploration of the contradictory nature of drama, of politics, and of the relationship between the two. The Exclusion Crisis exposes and sharpens contradictions which already exist in society and in the theatre, and generates what may be called a drama of contradiction. The discussion looks at Tory plays and the contradictions of royalism in crisis. These are greater than often supposed by critics who stress the resilience and cogency of Stuart royalism. It also challenges the view of the drama of the Exclusion Crisis, as simply ‘Royalism's Last Dramatic Stand’. The heroes of avowedly royalist or Tory plays are often masochistic, passive, and paralysed by a sense of the difficulty of right action.

Keywords:   Tory plays, royalism, Toryism, society, Exclusion Crisis

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