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Scott Trudell (University of Maryland): "You can never bring in a wall": A Midsummer Night’s Dream as Media Theory
Scott Trudell (University of Maryland): "You can never bring in a wall": A Midsummer Night’s Dream as Media Theory
WhenTuesday, May 23, 2017, 4 – 6:30 p.m.
Campus locationStudent Union Building (HUB)
Campus room214
Event typesAcademics, Lectures/Seminars, Special Events
Event sponsorsClassics, Medieval, and Early Modern Studies Graduate Interest Cluster.…. Emily George,

Textual Studies Program.…. Professor Jeffrey Todd Knight,; Professor Geoffrey Turnovsky,

Department of English. Professor Brian Reed, Chair,, 206-543-7895. 

CMEMS would like to thank the ESU Seattle Branch for their generous support in making this event possible.……

Professor Scott Trudell (English, University of Maryland)

'You can never bring in a wall’: A Midsummer Night’s Dream as Media Theory

How might A Midsummer Night’s Dream offer a way past the reductive stage-page divide that stubbornly persists in early modern drama studies? Dream’s playful inquiry into “shaping fantasies” and that which enacts them is far more capacious than poets’ pens and the “local habitations” they enact in the theater. We have also to contend with actors literally enacting stage properties, unwieldy children playing musical fairies, even an objectified yet incorporeal changeling boy at the crux of the plot. I propose that the broader array of signifying objects in this metatheatrical play can be conceived as media, that is, as physical conduits for information that become meaningful precisely insofar as they evanesce and disappear. This outlook helps us move beyond a binary between ephemeral performance and material text, and, in turn, the segmentation of book history and performance studies.

Scott Trudell is an Assistant Professor of English at the University of Maryland. He specializes in early modern literature, music, and media theory. His current project focuses on song, mediation, and poiesis from Sidney and Shakespeare to Jonson and Milton.

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