The White Devil Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 24 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The White Devil.
This section contains 648 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The White Devil Study Guide

Appearance and Reality

In The White Devil, Webster reveals his fascination in the difference between the way events and characters appear and the reality of these events and people. The title of the play itself reveals this interest; a popular proverb of the time, according to Margaret Loftus Ranald in her book John Webster, taught that "the white devil is worse than the black." Critics generally apply the title of the play to Vittoria. Her outwardly stunning and radiant beauty stands in stark contrast to "the viciousness of her soul," according to Ranald. She is thus more despicable than an openly villainous character because her beauty hides her deceit.

Likewise, the richness of first Camillo's household, and later Bracciano's household in Padua, belie the corruption present at their core. In the first case, Camillo is a husband who seems unable to fulfill his husbandly duties. Although he has a...

(read more)

This section contains 648 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The White Devil Study Guide
Copyrights
Drama for Students
The White Devil from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
Follow Us on Facebook