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Thinking Through Place on the Early Modern English Stage$
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Andrew Bozio

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780198846567

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198846567.001.0001

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Forms of Emplacement

Forms of Emplacement

The Arts of Memory, Chorography, and Theatrical Performance

(p.25) 1 Forms of Emplacement
Thinking Through Place on the Early Modern English Stage

Andrew Bozio

Oxford University Press

Taking its cue from William Sly’s performance of a disoriented playgoer in the Induction to John Marston’s The Malcontent, this chapter puts theatrical performance in dialogue with two other modes of thinking through place in the early modern period: first, what Mary Carruthers has termed the “architectural” model of the arts of memory, and, second, chorography, or the practice of describing a region in terms of its topographical features and history. It argues that these modes resemble one another in depicting place as a kind of phenomenological assemblage, one that comes into being as the disparate features of an ambient environment are perceived and organized within embodied thought. This resemblance reveals the intimate relationship between environment and embodied thought within the early modern English playhouse, and it thereby suggests that theatrical performance was less a form of spatial abstraction than a means of transforming the way that playgoers perceived, experienced, and navigated their surroundings.

Keywords:   theatrical performance, The Malcontent, arts of memory, chorography, cartography, John Norden

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