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Four Jacobean Sex Tragedies (Oxford World's Classics) Paperback – 7 May 1998


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Product details

  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford Paperbacks (7 May 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0192823205
  • ISBN-13: 978-0192823205
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 2.5 x 12.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 808,595 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description

About the Author

Martin Wiggins is Fellow of The Shakespeare Institute and Lecturer in English at the University of Birmingham.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Roman Clodia TOP 100 REVIEWER on 3 Jan. 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This contains the little known The Insatiate Countess, Beaumont & Fletcher's The Maid's Tragedy, Middleton's The Maiden's Tragedy, and Fletcher's The Tragedy of Valentinian.

I'm not completely sure I'd describe them as 'sex tragedies' - while they certainly have a sexual theme so, of course, do Othello, The Duchess of Malfi, Women Beware Women, and countless other Jacobean dramas. Wiggins attempts to justify this classification in the introduction and certainly does draw some parallels between these texts, but doesn't explain why he chooses these plays and not others.

Regardless of the categorisation, it's good to have some little known plays made available at a good price, and Oxford are reliable in terms of the texts used. The Maid's Tragedy is one of my favourite Jacobean dramas with an interesting view of the relationship between sex and politics, so this volume would be worth it for that alone.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 2 reviews
42 of 46 people found the following review helpful
Wiggins is a smashing editor. 23 Jun. 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Since Amazon.com can't be bothered to list the contents of all the books, I thought I'd be helpful: this book contains The Maid's Tragedy (Beaumont and Fletcher), The Maiden's Tragedy (Middleton), The Tragedy of Valentinian, and The Insatiate Countess (from a draft by Marston).
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
David Lynch, move on over! 15 Sept. 2005
By Q - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Oh my goodness! What a wonderful gruesome collection of early 17th century plays! Jacobean drama is conventionally characterized as "decadent," and this anthology seems to justify the appellation. How about nymphomania, necrophilia, incest, murder, poison, blackmail, adultery, and rape? Although the subject matter is sensational, these are also serious psychological studies, well-written and well-plotted dramas. These fascinating plays are not widely available, but they should be. Anybody interested in 17th century English drama and culture will enjoy these plays. The plays are especially provocative in their treatment of monarchy; the royal court is typically portrayed as deeply corrupted, tyrannous, and decadent. Amazingly, for an age of royal absolutism, these plays seem to justify regicide. David Lynch, more over, here come the Jacobean sex tragedies.

I agree with the comments of the previous reviewer that the editing leaves much to be desired. The use of endnotes instead of footnotes is horribly distracting. I finally just stopped using the notes. Most of the notes are unnecessary and add little to the understanding of the text. If you're familiar with reading Shakespeare, you can probably comprehend these texts without looking at the endnotes.
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