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A discriminating audience: Touring Shakespeare and mid-nineteenth-century Tasmania


Gaby, R, A discriminating audience: Touring Shakespeare and mid-nineteenth-century Tasmania, Cogent Arts & Humanities, 3, (1) Article 1237143. ISSN 2331-1983 (2016) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Copyright 2016 The Authors. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

DOI: doi:10.1080/23311983.2016.1237143


The 1850s were a defining decade for colonial Tasmania, encompassing the cessation of convict transportation, the establishment of a House of Assembly and the jettisoning of the islandís old identity as Van Diemenís Land. Many Tasmanian settlers were dedicated to the task of raising the cultural standing of the colony and Shakespeare became an integral part of this process. A steady stream of visiting players from America and England brought Shakespeare to Tasmania in the 1850s, including Sarah and James Stark, Eleanor Goddard and John Caple, McKean Buchanan and G.V. Brooke. Newspapers of the period reflect a lively and varied local interaction with their productions. Focusing on the evidence of contemporary reviews, this paper considers the political resonance of Shakespeare in mid-nineteenth- century Tasmania. It suggests that touring Shakespeare productions opened up key opportunities for this geographically and socially marginalised community to assert a new sense of itself as a discriminating audience, ready to engage with complex and profound modes of thinking and expression.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Shakespeare; nineteenth century; Tasmania; reviews; convicts; touring
Research Division:Language, Communication and Culture
Research Group:Literary studies
Research Field:British and Irish literature
Objective Division:Culture and Society
Objective Group:Understanding past societies
Objective Field:Understanding past societies not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Gaby, R (Dr Rosemary Gaby)
ID Code:112327
Year Published:2016
Deposited By:School of Humanities
Deposited On:2016-11-04
Last Modified:2017-10-30
Downloads:132 View Download Statistics

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