Barbarous Play examines English Renaissance understandings of race as depicted in drama. Reading plays by Shakespeare, Marlowe, Webster, and Middleton, Lara Bovilsky offers case studies of how racial meanings are generated by narratives of boundary crossing—especially miscegenation, religious conversion, and class transgression. In the process, she argues that understanding just what is false and figurative in past depictions of race can clarify the illogic of present-day racism.
Subjects: Language & Literature
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