A Critical Edition of The Life and Death of Jack Straw, 1594

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Stephen Longstaffe
Edwin Mellen Press, Jan 1, 2002 - Biography & Autobiography - 296 pages
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The Life and Death of Jack Straw (1594) is essential to an understanding of the politics of the history play in the 1590s through its presentation of the original `peasants' revolt' of 1381. Because editions of the play up to the present have been primarily concerned with establishing the text, most readers have lacked the important contextual and critical information. This first-ever annotated edition in English will help to broaden the debates around the politics of the drama at the end of Elizabeth's reign, combining a synthesis of previous scholarship and criticism with the fruits of new research. It offers a lightly modernized and corrected edition of the text and of the play's history, it features a long critical discussion placing the play in its intellectual and critical context. Readers interested in the play's negotiations with its immediate sources will be able to pursue them further, through the edition's reproducing as sources and analogues extensive selections from the two major chronicle sources, Holinshed's and Grafton's Chronicles, and the relevant sections of two other texts often associated with the play, Nelson's Lord Mayor's Pageant of 1590 and Richard Johnson's 1592 Worthies of London.

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A note on the text
Reception history
Critical essay

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Bibliographic information