- File Size: 2827 KB
- Print Length: 623 pages
- Publisher: Penguin; Critical ed. edition (August 7, 2014)
- Publication Date: August 7, 2014
- Sold by: PEN UK
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00M3IS6TY
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Not Enabled
- Lending: Not Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #582,880 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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|Print List Price:||$15.00|
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The Duchess of Malfi, The White Devil, The Broken Heart and 'Tis Pity She's a Whore: with The White Devil, The Broken Heart and 'Tis Pity She's a Whore (Penguin Classics) Kindle Edition
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About the Author
JOHN FORD was born in 1586 in Devon, England. His early career was wholly concerned with poetry and philosophical works, and it was not until the 1620s that he began writing stage plays, including The Broken Heart (1620) and'Tis Pity She's a Whore (c.1630). Nothing more is known of Ford after the performance of his last play in 1638.
JANE KINGSLEY-SMITH (editor) is a reader at Roehampton University, London, and author of Shakespeare's Drama of Exile and Cupid in Early Modern Literature and Culture. --This text refers to the paperback edition.
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But what's most impressive about this Kindle edition is that at last, and for the first time I've encountered, verse shows up correctly in a Kindle edition, line numbers are given but don't make the verse misalign itself, the thorough and helpful notes are easy to get to, and when a verse is too long for the Kindle to give all of it in one line, the line breaks correctly, and the line-continuation is indented in the traditional print way.
This is all routine stuff in a print edition, but Kindle took years before its programs were sophisticated enough to accomplish the same thing. No matter what size or type you use, the lines indent correctly, the footnotes are available at a touch, verse and prose are completely distinguished, and the lines are numbered correctly.
It's a tremendous achievement, and I hope more and more Kindle editions will be this good in future. The price may be a little offputting, but for verse drama fans, it's well worth it.
There's a complete Marston from 1887 on Kindle, for a lower price, that has good verse-division and line numbers too. Yippee! Kindle is beginning to figure verse out. It's BACK TO THE FUTURE PART 4.
Critics such as Charles Lamb and A.C. Swinburne have elevated Webster to the place of other distinguished playwrights of the Elizabethan/Jacobean theater such as Christopher Marlowe, Ben Jonson and Thomas Middleton as second to none other than William Shakespeare. An early twentieth-century editor of Webster, F. L. Lucas, called him the master of "Brooding atmosphere and sudden flashes" (Lucas, General Introduction 21). Both of his major tragedies, on which his reputation primarily rests, are set in Italy, and both are based on a general recollection of historical events based on historical reports in pamphlets and in novellas (such as the plot for The Duchess of Malfi, which is found in William Painter's The Palace of Pleasure). Being prime examples of Jacobean Tragedy, they are often classified as revenge tragedies in popular imagination, though Jane Kingsley Smith, the editor and author of the introduction for these texts, suggests otherwise, stating that they "stand skeptically and even mockingly apart from them" (Introduction, xix).
Thus far I have only read Webster's plays with the introductory remarks made by Smith regarding them. John Ford's two tragedies, however, are certainly on my to-be-read list, especially 'Tis Pity She's a Whore (1630), which tells the story of a tragic brother-sister relationship.
Overall, this edition is great, with footnotes on each page that are not cumbersome when reading through each play, a satisfactory introduction and selected bibliography for more intensive research purposes, and a generally relaible edition taken from the earliest quartos of these plays, with suitable square bracket emendations for clarification.