IMC 2017: Sessions

Session 1334: No Laughing Matter: Comedy and Laughter in Early English Drama

Wednesday 5 July 2017, 16.30-18.00

Sponsor:Medieval English Theatre, Lancaster University
Organiser:Charlotte Steenbrugge, School of English, University of Sheffield
Moderator/Chair:Clare Wright, School of English, University of Kent
Paper 1334-aThe Humour of the Slaughter of the Innocents Plays
(Language: English)
Sarah Brazil, Département de langue et littérature anglaises, Université de Genève
Index terms: Language and Literature - Middle English, Performance Arts - Drama
Paper 1334-b'Complaining about the We[a]ther': John Heywood, Thomas More, and the Fall of Wolsey
(Language: English)
Greg Walker, Department of English Literature, University of Edinburgh
Index terms: Performance Arts - Drama, Politics and Diplomacy
Paper 1334-c'With myrth and gam, / To the lawde of this lam': Shepherds, Chandlers, and the Agnus Dei in York and Towneley
(Language: English)
Jamie Beckett, Department of English Studies, Durham University
Index terms: Language and Literature - Middle English, Performance Arts - Drama
Abstract

This session will assess the multifaceted uses of comedy on the early English stage. Paper -a will build a more complex perspective on the conjunction of the humorous and the religious in the Slaughter of the Innocents scenes. Paper -b will suggest how the potential for comedy hovered over allusions to the fall of Wolsey in both official government statements and court drama. Finally, Paper -c will re-consider the humour of the York and Towneley ‘Shepherds’ plays against the properties of a little-studied but apparently ubiquitous amuletic object, the Agnus Dei.