Revisionist mythmaking in contemporary women playwrights

Ponti, Emanuela (2005) Revisionist mythmaking in contemporary women playwrights. MPhil(R) thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Abstract

The following dissertation studies the way in which Timberlake Wertenbaker, Sarah Kane and Liz Lochhead revise classical myth in the plays The Love of the Nightingale (1988), Phaedra's Love (1994) and Medea (2001). Starting from an idea of revision as a 'fresh perspective' on the past legacy, the thesis exploits textual and performance analysis to point out the three playwrights' main intents and results. Especially focusing on the gender and spatial dynamics working in the plays, the study highlights the figures of Philomele, Phaedra and Medea and, where possible, their 'new' and unprecedented characterization. Great importance is also given to the language and to the metatheatricality of the works, since both play a very important part in the three revisions. Language is usually a tool to provide the heroines with 'a dissident idiom' and to establish a stronger link with the present. Metatheatricality, on the contrary, seems to entrap the female characters into the myth and prevents them from fully breaking the hold of the past on them. Reflecting on the dynamics of audience reception, the dissertation also underlines the relevance of classical myth to our times as well as its still problematic nature.

Item Type: Thesis (MPhil(R))
Qualification Level: Masters
Additional Information: Adviser: P A Skantze
Keywords: Theater, English literature
Date of Award: 2005
Depositing User: Enlighten Team
Unique ID: glathesis:2005-70959
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 08 May 2019 09:21
Last Modified: 08 May 2019 09:21
URI: http://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/70959

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