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Full-Text Articles in Modern Languages

Genesis 31-34 As Spanish Comedia: Lope De Vega’S El Robo De Dina, Matthew D. Stroud Jul 2015

Genesis 31-34 As Spanish Comedia: Lope De Vega’S El Robo De Dina, Matthew D. Stroud

Matthew D Stroud

Lope de Vega’s El robo de Dina, based upon Genesis 31-34, focuses on the disturbing series of events involving Jacob’s daughter, Dinah, and culminating in the mass slaughter of an entire enemy people who were doing their best to accommodate the demands of the Hebrews. The primary focus of this article is not the Biblical story itself, but rather the techniques that Lope used to adapt his source text for a comedia audience. From the amplification of the scope of the source text by the inclusion of the story of Laban and Jacob to the depiction of women ...


The Closest Reading: Creating Annotated Editions, Matthew D. Stroud Jul 2015

The Closest Reading: Creating Annotated Editions, Matthew D. Stroud

Matthew D Stroud

Teaching old literature of any kind to undergraduates is a challenge. The language is difficult, the themes often lack resonance for today's students, and the cultural references are abstruse. When one adds to the mix that the works are in an archaic version of Spanish, not the native language of most students in the United States, and that the plays are written in florid, baroque poetry, the task of helping students to appreciate the Spanish comedia for its literary value is made considerably more demanding. A great many students simply do not understand what is going on with the ...


Imperial Incentives And Individual Allegiances In Juan Antonio Correa’S La Pérdida Y Restauración De Bahía De Todos Los Santos, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 2015

Imperial Incentives And Individual Allegiances In Juan Antonio Correa’S La Pérdida Y Restauración De Bahía De Todos Los Santos, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Juan Antonio Correa's La pérdida y restauración de Bahía de Todos los Santos, written primarily to celebrate the successful recapture in 1625 of an important American colony from the Dutch and their allies, invites an investigation into why and how human beings can be motivated to support people and institutions that not only do not directly benefit them but may in fact operate in ways that are unfavourable to their own lives and causes. Informed by the political writings of Antonio Gramsci and Paulo Freire and the psychoanalytic theories of Jacques Lacan, this study explores the various reasons why ...


Taking Matters Into Their Own Hands: Heroic Women Of The Early Reconquest In The Spanish Comedia, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 2014

Taking Matters Into Their Own Hands: Heroic Women Of The Early Reconquest In The Spanish Comedia, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Against the backdrop of the uncertain and troubling history of Christian Spain at the turn of the ninth century, three comedias highlight the heroic deeds of the women of Asturias and León. In Lope de Vega’s Las doncellas de Simancas, women who are to be sent as tribute to the Emir of Córdoba sever their own hands, threaten suicide, and ultimately lead the resistance against the barbaric exchange. In Las famosas asturianas, also by Lope, Sancha, selected, as well, for delivery to the Moors, shames her countrymen by appearing undressed before them but not in the presence of the ...


Genesis 31-34 As Spanish Comedia: Lope De Vega’S El Robo De Dina, Matthew D. Stroud Apr 2012

Genesis 31-34 As Spanish Comedia: Lope De Vega’S El Robo De Dina, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Lope de Vega’s El robo de Dina, based upon Genesis 31-34, focuses on the disturbing series of events involving Jacob’s daughter, Dinah, and culminating in the mass slaughter of an entire enemy people who were doing their best to accommodate the demands of the Hebrews. The primary focus of this article is not the Biblical story itself, but rather the techniques that Lope used to adapt his source text for a comedia audience. From the amplification of the scope of the source text by the inclusion of the story of Laban and Jacob to the depiction of women ...


The Biblical Ruth As Dama Principal: Tirso’S La Mejor Espigadera, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 2012

The Biblical Ruth As Dama Principal: Tirso’S La Mejor Espigadera, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

The comedia mined a variety of source texts for its plots—Italian novelle, Spanish history, Greek and Roman mythology, and, of course, the Bible—but always managed to adapt plot, setting, and characters to the conventions of the Spanish national theater. This process offered great benefits, such as audience familiarity, as well as challenges, including inherent and unavoidable limitations on artistic freedom. One of the more interesting adaptations is Tirso de Molina’s reworking of the Biblical story of Ruth in La mejor espigadera, primarily because of the lack of dramatic potential offered by the original: there are no villains ...


Artistic Distance And The Comedia: Lessons From Don Quijote, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 2009

Artistic Distance And The Comedia: Lessons From Don Quijote, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Don Quijote is a novel, perhaps even the first modern novel (Fuentes 15, Bloom 145). Practically from the date of its writing, however, it has been almost irresistibly viewed through the lens of theater—"Como casi es comedia la historia de don Quixote de la Mancha [ ... ]"in the words of Avellaneda (fol.lllr)—and a growing body of scholarship acknowledges the importance of theatricality to both the structure of the work and the way one interprets it. "Theatricality," as it turns out, is a very flexible term in many of these studies and the widely varying definitions of it have ...


Supersession, The Comedia Nueva, And Tirso's La Mejor Espigadera, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 2009

Supersession, The Comedia Nueva, And Tirso's La Mejor Espigadera, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Given Spain's self-identification with the Roman Catholic Church under the Hapsburgs, what is one to make of the great number of comedias that take as their protagonists figures from the Hebrew Bible, individuals revered by Jews as righteous ancestors, models of behavior, and illustrious examples of the triumphs of the Hebrew people faced with endless persecution and oppression? Most of these plays focus on the actions of men (e.g., King David in Tirso’s La venganza de Tamar, and Joseph and Jacob in Mira’s El más feliz cautiverio), but a number of them focus on righteous Hebrew ...


The Closest Reading: Creating Annotated Editions, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 2006

The Closest Reading: Creating Annotated Editions, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Teaching old literature of any kind to undergraduates is a challenge. The language is difficult, the themes often lack resonance for today's students, and the cultural references are abstruse. When one adds to the mix that the works are in an archaic version of Spanish, not the native language of most students in the United States, and that the plays are written in florid, baroque poetry, the task of helping students to appreciate the Spanish comedia for its literary value is made considerably more demanding. A great many students simply do not understand what is going on with the ...


Defining The Comedia: On Generalizations Once Widely Accepted That Are No Longer Accepted So Widely, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 2006

Defining The Comedia: On Generalizations Once Widely Accepted That Are No Longer Accepted So Widely, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Defining the comedia is a challenge that is rarely addressed directly in the pages of the Bulletin of the Comediantes. Those of us who spend our professional lives working with the plays that are brought together under this cover term have a visceral or intuitive understanding of what falls into the category of comedia and what lies outside of it. We are hardly exempt from having to articulate our definitions in concrete terms, however, because students, colleagues, and organizations to whom we write grants all want us to establish the limits, scope, and parameters of our field of study. Sometimes ...


The Comedia In Amsterdam, 1609-1621: Rodenburgh's Translation Of Aguilar's La Venganza Honrosa, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 1997

The Comedia In Amsterdam, 1609-1621: Rodenburgh's Translation Of Aguilar's La Venganza Honrosa, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

In the seventeenth century, the Spanish comedia was not only known outside of Spain, it informed other national literatures and was even performed abroad, either in Spanish or in translation. In most cases, it was received into an established cultural environment, such as Corneille's adaptations in France; its appearance was not considered politically inflammatory in any sense as the host cultures were able to deal with the comedia as only a literary phenomenon. In the case of the Low Countries before 1648, however, the comedia was translated and performed in a colony in more or less open rebellion against ...


The Electronic Comedia, Matthew D. Stroud Jul 1993

The Electronic Comedia, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

The rapid transmission of data in machine readable formats has for many years now been a staple of the business world. Now, in a number of fields, the same technology is being applied to scholarly subjects, including French and English literatures. The availability of primary texts ready to be read by one's own computer is almost as great a revolution in textual dissemination as the invention of the printing press. Other disciplines, in which scholars can exchange texts either on diskette or by uploading and downloading to a network, are far ahead of Spanish literature, but there is both ...


Genre And Lack In The Comedia, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 1993

Genre And Lack In The Comedia, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

The history of genre studies is almost a textbook case of critical self-deconstruction. Beginning with Aristotle himself, we are faced with irreconcilable differences between description and prescription, literary cause and psychological effect, the written Poetics and the promised but lacking sequel on comedy. The temptation to compromise on a definition (or multiple definitions) of a genre has been met with startlingly rigid manifestos for limiting our use of a word such as "tragedy" only to those plays that fulfill the particular narrowly- conceived requirements of one critic or another. Given Jacques Lacan's penchant for jumping into the middle of ...


Symbols, Referents, And Theatrical Semantics: The Use Of Hands In The Comedia, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 1989

Symbols, Referents, And Theatrical Semantics: The Use Of Hands In The Comedia, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

One of the most important products of the application of New Criticism to the comedia was the discovery of the functions of clusters of images to the dramatic and theatrical themes within a play. Among the most pervasive and subtle images and symbols are those involving hands and, by extension, arms, rings, gloves, and daggers. A quick, impressionistic overview of the connotations of hands reveals a number of different and often contradictory meanings: trust and treachery, power and submission, salvation and damnation, to mention only a few. So ubiquitous are hands, and so necessary are they to the plot complications ...


The Comedia As Playscript, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 1989

The Comedia As Playscript, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

The relationship between literary text and theatrical performance is the subject of intense discussion and occasional animosity between those who believe that performance is only the faithful translation of the text from one medium to another and those for whom a playscript is only a starting point or a secondary element to performance. We do know, however, that the comedias were written to be performed, that there are performance signs imbedded in the texts themselves, and that if we ignore performance altogether we end up teaching the literary texts as though they were novels or poems. The problem that this ...


Martyrs, Martyrdom, And The Comedia, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 1985

Martyrs, Martyrdom, And The Comedia, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Plays about martyrs form a curious subgenre within the comedia. In a direct contradiction of the values normally associated with the comedia, we are asked to accept that dishonor is glorious, that submission is courageous, and that death is a reward because it brings eternal life. The martyrs themselves, however, as presented in the comedia, are not of a single type; the way each comes to his or her final apotheosis is a function of the comedia setting in which the martyr acts. Too, because martyr plays almost always use external source material, a study of the presentations of the ...


Social-Comic Anagnorisis In La Dama Duende, Matthew D. Stroud Oct 1977

Social-Comic Anagnorisis In La Dama Duende, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

La dama duende has become quite a puzzle. Barbara Mujica, in her article, "Tragic Elements in Calderón's La dama duende," discusses several elements of Calderonian tragedy in a work which she ultimately defines as "comedy in its highest sense," (p. 328) and she finds implicit social criticism in its vaguely happy ending. Robert ter Horst refutes the idea of comedy and tragedy as leading a double life by saying, in effect, that comedy is potential tragedy which is averted by "anticipating or delaying the conclusions to which tragedy leaps," but then he goes on to claim that Don Manuel ...