Performance and Space in Shakespeare's London
By D.J. Hopkins
Routledge – 2007 – 236 pages
This interdisciplinary study theorizes the interaction of individual performance and social space. Examining three categories of space – the urban, the theatrical, and the cartographic – this volume considers the role of performance in the production and operation of these spaces during a period in London’s history defined roughly by the life of Shakespeare.
City/Stage/Globe not only organizes a selection of plays, pageants, maps, and masques in the historical and cultural contexts in which they emerged, but also uses performance theory to locate the ways in which these seemingly ephemeral events contributed to lasting change in the spatial concepts and physical topograpy of early modern London.
"The book uses an interdisciplinary methodology to examine the ways in which London as urban space underwent a reconceptualization as it moved from medieval town to early modern city.
[Hopkins] brilliantly traces the mixed and gradual evolution of postmedieval maps, itineraries, and map images to illustrate the different ways in which visual representations of space and topography performed the city." --Ric Knowles (University of Guelph), Theatre Journal
"[T]he book’s greatest contribution lies in its methodology. Part of Routledge’s series on "Literary Criticism and Cultural Theory," City/Stage/Globe brings a profound investment in performance theories and practices to the study of literary London."
"Though the immediate audience of may be scholars of performance in Shakespeare’s London, Hopkins’s model of a performance genealogy of space constitutes a significant contribution to the study of performance beyond the early modern period or England." --Marissa Greenberg (University of New Mexico), Shakespeare Bulletin