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The Absence of America – The London Stage, 1576-1642 - Oxford Scholarship Online
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The Absence of America: The London Stage, 1576-1642

Gavin Hollis


This book examines why early modern drama’s response to English settlement in the New World was muted, even though the so-called golden age of Shakespeare coincided with the so-called golden age of exploration: no play is set in the Americas; few plays treat colonization as central to the plot; and a handful feature Native American characters (most of whom are Europeans in disguise). However, advocates of colonialism in the seventeenth century denounced playing companies as enemies on a par with the Pope and the Devil. Instead of writing off these accusers as paranoid cranks, this book takes a ... More

Keywords: early modern drama, Virginia, London, William Shakespeare, John Fletcher, Ben Jonson, Philip Massinger, Robert Greene, Thomas Middleton, anti-theatricalism

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2015 Print ISBN-13: 9780198734321
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2015 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198734321.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Gavin Hollis, author
Assistant Professor, Department of English Language and Literature, Hunter College CUNY

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