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The Duchess of Malfi, The White Devil, The Broken Heart and 'Tis Pity She's a Whore

The Duchess of Malfi, The White Devil, The Broken Heart and 'Tis Pity She's a Whore

by John Webster; John Ford; Jane Kingsley-Smith

 

These four plays, written during the reigns of James I and Charles I, took revenge tragedy in dark and ambiguous new directions. In The Duchess of Malfi and The White Devil, John Webster explores the role of women and issues of power, sex and corruption in the Italian court, creating two unforgettable anti-heroines. In The Broken Heart, John Ford questions the value of emotional repression as his characters attempt to subdue their desires and hatreds in ancient Greece. Finally, Ford's masterpiece 'Tis Pity She's a Whore explores the taboo themes of incest and forbidden lust in a daring reworking of Romeo and Juliet.

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