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ENG220Y1 - Titus Andronicus - Lecture Notes.docx

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Elizabeth Harvey

ENG220Y1 – LECTURE NOTES September 25, 2013 Titus Andronicus: Introduction:  violence is displaced into the reader's imagination  the theater was a part of the culture in: o civic and religious festivals  rituals in which people participated that involved an emotional spectacle  there was pageants o music and dance o court masques  theatrical performance in courtly context, different from public theater o jousts, tournaments, entertainments  horrific, involve dogs o bear baiting, bull baiting  hungry dogs in a bear pit, a spectacle, pleasurable  attest to the desire of watching performances  arousing the emotions o royal progresses  medium to show the aristocracy to the public  sumptuary laws dictated who could wear what  meant that the royals and the aristocrats would roam around a city and demonstrate their power and wealth, a theatrical display - the more splendid they seemed, the more power they seemed to have  another way was via portraits of the royals, they seemed to not age, characteristics would repeat over and over although they may no longer have it anymore due to age  Ex: the rainbow portrait  belief was the senses were an espionage phenomenon, used the senses to make decisions or opinions  Elizabeth made a network of spies, you're only as good as your spy system - need infomation to know how to function and rule over the kingdom, just like we need the senses to function o Executions  public event, death penalty and punishment were enforced at this time  gruesome punishments  included hanging, burning, disembowelment and castration and drawn and quartered (arms and legs are attached to carriages and horses and they move until the body is torn apart)  execution of queen Mary of scot  execution of Charles 1, 1649 The theatricality of power and the power of theatricality:  Stephen Orgel - the illusion of power, 1975  the saying = a chiasmus,  the play is full of synecdoche of body parts; prepares you throughout the play Spectacle of punishment as mode of disciplining the subject's body:  Michel Foucault, discipline and punish, 1975  power of the sovereign written on the subject's body  chopping body parts was in the sovereign’s power; the authority took control of its people's bodies  plots against the sovereign and power were extreme  queen Elizabeth 1 started the spies system  when justice was proclaimed, it had a bodily effect on the suspect  nature of punishment, striked terror on everyone else during that time; fear of being caught; so there was cohesion  spectacle was designed to moderate behaviour via fear Performance and theater:  associate the globe with Shakespeare  both performance and text are needed to understand the text fully; to have the full physical experience  sight and hearing are given equal importance  includes the experience of embodiment  feelings described conjecture with what we imagine  playing companies had a manager in charge of the business  the queen's men (1583)  lord chamberlain's men (1594) = the theatre in Shoreditch, a suburb in London; Shakespeare’s early company and theatre; became king's men in 1603 under James 1; replaced by the globe in 1598 which was the first playhouse to be owned by players  ceremonial canon that burnt the globe in 1613 and rebuilt later  lord admiral's men (1594) = the rose Audience:  everybody went - women, aristocrats, mixing of discreet class divisions  rich, poor  gender, class, and size were mixed and varied Performances and the senses:  scope of the performance were aided by smell in the theatre  Ex: sulphur and brimstone was used in Macbeth for a hellish landscape in the witch scenes; music used too Metatheatre:  play within a play  calls to attention to the art of performance  internal references; Shakespeare’s favourite is "the globe" - could refer to the earth of the actual theatre; the audience are being asked to understand and interpret the allusions Actors:  through the career of the actor, they become a character intertext Costumes:  worn world  Peter Stallybrass and Ann Rosalind Jones argued that clothing circulated  when the aristocrat were tired of their old clothes, they would circulate them and the theatre company would take them and use them  the mimicking of the royals through theatrical portrayals reproduces the sense of power in a context that is not necessarily connected to politics  costumes hides the body and displays the body  Ex: bigger cod pieces to deceive, hide s the size of gentials but also displays the "largeness" of it Tragedy of Revenge:  has a history based on ancient Greek and Rome  became a sensational form of theatre in which something happens to a character and he/she must take justice into their own hands  individual cosmic moral because nothing else can bring justice  intertexts of Ovid’s metamorphoses, Virgil’s Aeneid, Seneca tragedy, roman history  the most important sense in the play is touch  armour is like prosthetic skin; render one invulnerable  throughout the play, Titus loses his amour, his clothes are worn open, later loses body parts  therefore the armour represents a covering, to feel things emotionally and physically = theme of touch; Titus starts off with unfeeling, unkind against his nature and his sons, then later begins to feel and at the end becomes a ruin  a sedimentation of layers; the belief that rocks had feelings during that time  a pamplishest Skin:  city of truth, rewrite of Aristotle’s ethics  each sense has a triumph arch or entrance to the city  skin is luminous and lustful  allegory to feeling  allegory of touch, Jan Breughel, 1617 – painting  the senses were in a hierarchy, the lowest is touch, but is also what shapes it, Plato says that it was the lowest because it was the closest to the flesh, all the other senses distances ourselves from our body  touch is dangerous, erotically as well  Luce Irigaray, ethics of sexual: "  Didier Anzieu, the skin ego: "a mental image of which the ego of the child makes use during the early phases of development to represent itself as an ego containing psychical contents, on the basis of its experience of the surface of the body"; "since the renaissance, western thought has been obsessed with a particular … inner core or nucleus" 9 ; "at the gastrula stage ... surface entities" 9  the material of skin is the same material as the brain when we're embryos  attaches the skin to the body even further  the hands are much bigger than they are because of the many tactile senses, same with the eyes, nose and lips  amour of the outside and the vulnerable inside; visceral co
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