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Games and Theatre in Shakespeare's England
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Book description

This collection of essays brings together theories of play and game with theatre and performance to produce new understandings of the history and design of early modern English drama. Through literary analysis and embodied practice, an international team of distinguished scholars examines a wide range of games—from dicing to bowling to roleplaying to videogames—to uncover their fascinating ramifications for the stage in Shakespeare's era and our own. Foregrounding ludic elements challenges the traditional view of drama as principally mimesis, or imitation, revealing stageplays to be improvisational experiments and participatory explorations into the motive, means, and value of recreation. Delving into both canonical masterpieces and hidden gems, this innovative volume stakes a claim for play as the crucial link between games and early modern theatre, and for the early modern theatre as a critical site for unraveling the continued cultural significance and performative efficacy of gameplay today.

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