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The Disobedient Child: A Tudor Interlude in Performance

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Emma Whipday


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© 2019, © 2019 Author. Filial impiety, domestic disorder, and a sizeable helping of song: the evening of 1 March 2019 saw all these presented to the audience gathered at Newcastle University, as we staged a reading of Thomas Ingelend’s The Disobedient Child in order to explore the text and its performance possibilities before an audience of early modernists. The Disobedient Child offers a window onto fantasies and anxieties about domestic relationships and household practices in the late Tudor period through the format of a moralistic school play; it is also a significant precursor to the shrew narratives we see onstage in Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew, the anonymous The Taming of a Shrew (potentially a source, memorial reconstruction, or adaptation), and John Fletcher’s sequel, The Tamer Tamed. The gender politics of The Disobedient Child are therefore crucial for a more complete understanding of the history of staged shrewishness in early modern England. This short article draws on our staged reading to explore the discomforting comedy of the portrayal of marital violence, and the political and moral complexities of this little-studied Tudor interlude.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Cox Jensen F, Key DL, Whipday E

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Shakespeare

Year: 2020

Volume: 16

Issue: 1

Pages: 60-67

Online publication date: 22/10/2019

Acceptance date: 02/04/2018

ISSN (print): 1745-0918

ISSN (electronic): 1745-0926

Publisher: Routledge


DOI: 10.1080/17450918.2019.1657173


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