FORMER OCH FUNKTIONER I GESTALTNINGEN AV ÖVERVAKNING OCH KONTROLL I 1600-TALETS MUSIKTEATERLIBRETTI

Dag Hedman

Abstract


”Forms and functions in the representation of surveillanc and control in 17th century librettos”

A striking feature of 17th century musical dramas is the regular occurrence of motifs aiming to intensify the dramatic tension, such as espionage, surveillance, physical control and imprisonment. Through which forms are the motif complex
of surveillance and control established in the libretti of the 17th century? What is its function? Did the audience perceive it as subversive or cautionary? The purpose of this article is to partly give a typological answer to these questions, and partly to discuss what functions the subject matter of surveillance and control could have had from the perspective of the powers that be and the audience/readers respectively. This investigation is based upon comparative close reading of more than 160 17th century English, French, Italian, Swedish and German libretti. Out of these 23 French, Italian, and German libretti have been chosen for closer examination.



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