Broken Symmetries: A Study of Agency in Shakespeare's Plays
This important study makes a convincing case for its thesis that the dramatic form of Shakespeare's plays corresponds to that of a natural system evolving to a more complex state while undergoing symmetry breaking. Drawing upon such key concepts of chaos theory as global agency and self-similarity, the book constructs a methodology which illuminates many problematic aspects of agency in the selected comedies, tragedies, and histories it examines. Each of these genres is shown to reflect the paradoxical dynamics of a chaotic system. This fresh systems perspective offers a serious challenge to the structuralist assumptions underlying many current literary approaches.
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The Threshold of Change
The Agency of the Dream
Fault Lines in History
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action agency appears arise battle become bifurcation Bolingbroke broken symmetries century chaos theory chaotic communitas complex concept conflict Coriolanus critical differentiation disorder dramatic earlier energy England English entropy equilibrium eyes Falstaff far-from-equilibrium feel festive comedies feudal forces Forest fractal French global Hal's Hamlet hath Henry Henry's Hermia Hippolyta Hotspur human Ibid identity kind king Lady Macbeth language later liminal lines Lord of Misrule Macduff Marcius means medieval Midsummer Night's Dream mirth Misrule mock modern nature Ndembu Othello outlook paradoxical pattern perspective poststructural present prince relationship Renaissance Richard ritual role saturnalian scene second tetralogy seeks self-alienation self-similarity sense Shakespeare's Shakespeare's plays social soliloquy stage structure suggest symmetry breaking tetralogy theme Theseus things threshold tion tragedy transition trial by combat Troilus Turner Twelfth Night warrior dynamic weak witches words York young lovers