The White Devil | Criticism

This literature criticism consists of approximately 25 pages of analysis & critique of The White Devil.
This section contains 7,407 words
(approx. 25 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Charles R. Forker

SOURCE: "The White Devil and the Aesthetics of Chaos," in Skull Beneath the Skin: The Achievement of John Webster, Southern Illinois University Press, 1986, pp. 254-95.

In the following excerpt, Forker details how Webster's intermingling of several dramatic conventions (particularly Shakespearean) in The White Devil "produced a hybrid genre that not only allowed love to be pitted against death in the most violent and terrifying fashion but could be made to promote unsettling doubts about the validity and safety of romantic emotion itself"

It has been customary to classify Webster's two Italian tragedies as revenge plays. Certainly they possess many of the expected features—smouldering hatreds, intricate stratagems that recoil upon their inventors, sensational cruelty, courtly depravity, madness (real, feigned, or both), a tone of cynical bitterness and gloom, and, perhaps most importantly, an obsession with mortality. T. S. Eliot [in his poem "Whispers of Immortality"] evokes our...

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This section contains 7,407 words
(approx. 25 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Charles R. Forker
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Critical Essay by Charles R. Forker from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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