Historical and Contemporary Contexts
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In the last decade of the twentieth century the city of London gave birth to two new cultural institutions: the Globe Theatre in 1997 and the Tate Modern in 2000. The former is an Elizabethan-style playhouse built to imitate the sixteenth-century one in which Shakespeare’s plays were performed. Located where the original Globe stood at Bankside on the south side of the Thames, the new Globe produces Shakespearean plays using Elizabethan-style costuming and staging. The second new institution, the Tate Modern, is a sister museum to the original Tate Gallery, now referred to as Tate Britain. Dubbed the “national museum of modern art,” Tate Modern houses modern foreign and British art from 1900 to the present. Tate Britain, the “national gallery of British art,” may reclaim the British modern pieces at any time, however, to exhibit the history of British art complete in one place. Housed in the refurbished Bankside Power Station, Tate Modern stands on the south bank of the Thames not far from the new Globe. At the dawn of the new millennium in London, modernism and Elizabethanism stand side by side, shaping British cultural attention for the twenty-first century.
KeywordsHistorical Period National Culture Cultural History Cultural Form Contemporary Context
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- 8.The various uses of the term, in England and the United States, indicate how prevalent the “Renaissance” was as a way of describing life in the early 1900s and 1910s. Our Renaissance: Essays on the Reform and Revival of Classical Studies by Henry Browne (London: Longmans, Green, and Company, 1917) argued for classical studies against vernacular literary studies.Google Scholar
- The Renaissance of English Drama: Essays, Lectures, and Fragments relating to the Modern English Stage Written and Delivered in the Years 1883–1894 by Henry Arthur Jones (London: MacMillan, 1895) argued for a return of “literary drama” to the stage.Google Scholar
- The Renaissance of the Nineties by W. G. Blaikie Murdoch (London: Alexander Moring, Ltd., DeLaMore P, 1911) argued that the poets of the 1890s constituted a new “renaissance” in poetry equal to the romantic one.Google Scholar
- The Most Illustrious Ladies of the Italian Renaissance by Christopher Hare (London: Harper, 1904) gave biographies of Renaissance women. “The New Renaissance and Woman’s Place in it” was a baccalaureate address given at a small women’s college in Rockford, IL, by Julia H. Gulliver, the college’s president, in 1914 (Rockford, IL: Wilson P, 1914). “On ‘Renaissance’ and ‘Culture’ and Their Jewish Applications” was the presidential address to the Union of Jewish Literary Societies by the chief rabbi of London (March 1, 1915, University College, London).Google Scholar
- The Coming Renaissance, ed. James Marchant (London: Kegan Paul, 1913) was a series of essays predicting what England’s “new world” would be like after the Great War.Google Scholar
- Cottage Building in Cob, Pisé, Chalk and Clay: A Renaissance by Clough Williams-Ellis (London: “Country Life” and George Newnes, 1919) was a handbook for how to build cheap housing as the Elizabethans did when materials were at an all-time low due to the war.Google Scholar
- 17.See Greenblatt, ed. “The Forms of Power and the Power of Forms in the Renaissance,” Genre, Special Topics 7 (Norman, OK: U of Oklahoma P, 1982).Google Scholar
- For more on New Historicism see Greenblatt, Renaissance Self-Fashioning (Chicago: U of Chicago P, 1980) and Shakespearean Negotiations (Berkeley: U of California P, 1988);Google Scholar
- The New Historicism, ed. Harold Veeser (London: Routledge, 1989);Google Scholar
- Redrawing the Boundaries: The Transformation of English and American Literary Studies, ed. S. Greenblatt and Giles Gunn (New York: MLA P, 1992);Google Scholar
- Greenblatt, ed. Representing the English Renaissance (Berkeley: U of California P, 1988);Google Scholar