The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 19.0097 Thursday, 14 February 2008
From: Joseph Egert <
Date: Monday, 11 Feb 2008 14:14:06 -0800 (PST)
Subject: 19.0084 A Titus Tangent of Tone
Comment: Re: SHK 19.0084 A Titus Tangent of Tone
Paul Doniger writes:
>Kristen McDermott paraphrases Robert Hornback's "Emblems of Folly in the
>First Othello: Renaissance Blackface, Moor's Coat, and 'Muckender',"
>Comparative Drama 35.1 (2001): 69-99: "He argues persuasively that
>blackface was equally associated with stage fools as with devils-very
>I wonder if this association is somehow connected with the black leather
>masks of Harlequin and others from the Italian Comedy (Brighella & Il
>Dottore also had black masks)? Does anyone know?
Hornback addresses this very question in the referenced article. He
believes the black-faced Harlequin tradition down through Tarlton
clearly influenced Shakespeare's representation of Othello as the black
gull, or Renaissance era Harlequin figure, prey to Iago, the trickster
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