"Longino's work makes a convincing case for the importance of new readings of old texts. Although it deals with a rich array of information from both cultures' theoretical and practical fields, this book is surprisingly accessible to a wide range of readers, from scholars to the general public." The Comparatist
"A highly readable, subtle and pioneering analysis of some of the most important plays of the French canon. [Longino] has successfully challenged some of our most basic assumptions about classical theater." Modern Language Quarterly
"Longino is a careful and innovative reader of texts...her focused, clever, and accessible work leads to questions which will certainly elicit further research in this area." Renaissance Quarterly
"This erudite and timely study makes an exciting contribution to our appreciation of French classical drama, broadening avenues opened earlier by such scholars as Edward Said, Harriet Stone, and Mitchell Greenberg..." Seventeenth-Century News
"By revealing the Orientalism in classical theatre, Longino "defamiliarizes" canonical texts in fascinating and troubling ways." L'Esprit Createur
"Productive, illuminating..Given the repercussions today of France's colonial legacy, the topics Longino examines continue to resonate, even as the role of the 'Other' in shaping French national identity evolves." Dalhousie French Studies
"A refreshing and thought-provoking perspective." French Studies
Michèle Longino examines the ways in which Mediterranean exoticism inflects the themes represented in French classical drama. Longino explores plays by Corneille, Molière and Racine; Le Cid, Médée, and Le bourgeois gentilhomme among others. She offers a consideration of the role the staging of the near Orient played in shaping a sense of French colonial identity. Drawing on histories, travel journals, memoirs and correspondence, and bringing together literary and historical concerns, Longino considers these dramatisations in the context of French-Ottoman relations at the time of their production.