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Master Thesis

"Gender Trouble" on the Elizabethan Stage. Challenging conventions of femininity and masculinity in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, Midsummer Night's Dream and Venus and Adonis

Abstract : This dissertation is about gender and genre in three of Shakespeare’s works (A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Romeo and Juliet, Venus and Adonis). The aim is to analyse the various masculine and feminine characters’ place and whether they abide by the gender conventions or not in a comedy, a tragedy and a narrative poem. It is very interesting to note that genre and gender boundaries are porous in Shakespeare’s work, masculinity blending into femininity and comedy blending into tragedy. First, this dissertation strives to define the gender and genre conventions in Shakespeare’s time and studies the possible oppression they might have led to. However, some characters seem to resist those conventions, most of the time thanks to an inversion of roles, which leads to a blurring of those. Finally, that trouble, which prevents Shakespearean characters to be confined to pre-defined categories seem to extend to the audience/readership they were written for as well as to their author as often forgotten by the critics.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, October 9, 2018 - 2:55:53 PM
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Pauline Durin. "Gender Trouble" on the Elizabethan Stage. Challenging conventions of femininity and masculinity in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, Midsummer Night's Dream and Venus and Adonis. Literature. 2018. ⟨dumas-01891368⟩

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