REPRESENTATIONS OF CRISES. QUESTIONING AUTHORITIES ON THE EARLY MODERN STAGE
Every crisis is connected with a questioning of authorities. The early modern English theatre does not only stage quite a number of crises where an acknowledged authority (e.g. a king or a queen) has to prove whether he or she is still considered to be in a position to stand for the values of the community; it is also the site of a crisis of representation in which the traditional ways and means of presenting and representing (e.g. a print, a chronicle, a play) are questioned as to their medial authority of being in a position to adequately show and depict what is going on in the world. The seminar will address four Shakespearean history plays (Richard II, 1,2 Henry IV, Richard III) with regard both to their depiction of a crisis of authority and to the crisis of representation (in the theatre and elsewhere) in early modern England.