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Staging Passion in Ford's The Lover's Melancholy

The Lover's Melancholy seems an exception among Ford's plays. Most are structured around violent and sensational events; The Lover's Melancholy is quiet. This is because the play posits as an essential quality of the human psyche a slowness in the changing of emotional gears. Emotion is not only "staged" in the sense of being acted out, but also always accompanied by a time-delay mechanism. Hence this play is not peripheral to Ford's oeuvre, but a slow-motion investigation of the processes that lie at the heart of it, and a crucial part of his ongoing inquiry into the nature of drama.