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Products for grant FA-53868-08

William Shakespeare as Court Dramatist
Richard Dutton, Ohio State University

Grant details:

“A Jacobean Merry Wives?” (Article) [show prizes]
Title: “A Jacobean Merry Wives?”
Author: Richard Dutton
Abstract: The Folio text of Shakespeare's "Merry Wives of Windsor" (pub. 1623)has commonly been thought to have been written c. 1597, while the First Quarto version (pub. 1602) has been considered a poorly reported version of it, corrupted by "memorial reconstruction." This essay examines the likelihood that the Quarto version was written first and that the Folio version was a deliberate revision by Shakespeare for a known performance of the play at court on 4 November 1604.
Year: 2011
Format: Journal
Periodical Title: Ben Jonson Journal 18 (2011), 1-26.
Publisher: Edinburgh University Press

Shakespeare: Court Dramatist (Book)
Title: Shakespeare: Court Dramatist
Author: Richard Dutton
Abstract: Shakespeare, Court Dramatist centers around the contention that the courts of both Elizabeth I and James I loomed much larger in Shakespeare's creative life than is usually appreciated. Richard Dutton argues that many--perhaps most--of Shakespeare's plays have survived in versions adapted for court presentation, where length was no object (and indeed encouraged) and rhetorical virtuosity was appreciated. The first half of the study examines the court's patronage of the theater during Shakespeare's lifetime and the crucial role of its Masters of the Revels, who supervised all performances there (as well as censoring plays for public performance). Dutton examines the emergence of the Lord Chamberlain's Men and the King's Men, to whom Shakespeare was attached as their "ordinary poet," and reviews what is known about the revision of plays in the early modern period. The second half of the study focuses in detail on six of Shakespeare's plays which exist in shorter, less polished texts as well as longer, more familiar ones: Henry VI Part II and III, Romeo and Juliet, Henry V, Hamlet, and The Merry Wives of Windsor. Shakespeare, Court Dramatist argues that they are not cut down from those familiar versions, but poorly-reported originals which Shakespeare revised for court performance into what we know best today. More localized revisions in such plays as Titus Andronicus, Richard II, and Henry IV Part II can also best be explained in this context. The court, Richard Dutton argues, is what made Shakespeare Shakespeare.
Year: 2016
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Type: Single author monograph
ISBN: 9780198777748
Copy sent to NEH?: No