Shakespeare's Rhetoric of Comic Character: Dramatic Convention in Classical and Renaissance Comedy

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Psychology Press, 2005 - Literary Criticism - 168 pages

First published in 1985.

In this revisionist history of comic characterization, Karen Newman argues that, contrary to received opinion, Shakespeare was not the first comic dramatist to create self-conscious characters who seem 'lifelike' or 'realistic'. His comic practice is firmly set within a comic tradition which stretches from Plautus and Menander to playwrights of the Italian Renaissance.

 

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Contents

Comic plot conventions in Measure for Measure
20
Menander and New Comedy
30
Plautus and Terence
42
The enchantments of Circe
57
Mistaking in Much Ado
109
Shakespeares rhetoric of consciousness
121
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