The White Devil Essay

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Guyette, a longtime journalist, received a bachelor's degree in English writing from the University of Pittsburgh. In this essay, Guyette describes how John Webster's depiction of court life in Renaissance Italy can be viewed as a cautionary tale that still has relevance today.

The White Devil is based on a true story that occurred about 30 years prior to the writing of this Elizabethan drama circa 1612. As Matthew Gurewitsch wrote in a story about the play for the New York Times

The core of historical truth was this: in 1585 in Italy—that proverbial sink of sensational depravity—the Duke of Bracciano had conceived a passion for one Vittoria Accramboni, who succumbed only after Bracciano had arranged the murders first of his own wife, then of Vittoria's husband. In the black-magic lantern of Webster's imagination, it all made for darkly glittering theater.

Amidst that dark glitter, the play's major themes...

(read more from the Critical Essay #2 section)

This section contains 1,257 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The White Devil Study Guide
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The White Devil from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.