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  • El teatro del Siglo de Oro ante los espacios de la crítica. Encuentros y revisions
  • Sharon D. Voros
García Santo-Tomás, Enrique, ed. El teatro del Siglo de Oro ante los espacios de la crítica. Encuentros y revisions. Madrid: Iberoamericana-Vervuert, 2002. 482 pp.

This impressive volume brings together sixteen articles by well-known scholars from both sides of the Atlantic, ten of which were presented at a colloquium at El Escorial in 2001. Topics discussed include a wide range of issues still of concern to scholars today: the stage as symbolic space; issues of patronage; the adaptation of classical models to the stage of the period; stage space; canon formation; the inclusion, or lack thereof, in the canon of comic pieces; the staging and reception of the auto sacramental; the reception of the comedia in Italy; and questions on the future of the humanities. Absent from the discussion, although the editor mentions their significance to comedia scholarship in the introduction, are women dramatists. Also missing is an index, which would have been a boon to the reader given the range and depth of articles presented, most of them on canonical dramatists, with Lope and Calderón garnering the lion's share of scholarly attention, which in no way diminishes the quality of the contributions offered here.

Articles are arranged in chronological order according to the dramatists studied. Enrique García Santo-Tomas's piece begins the collection with a tour de force; he argues for a kind of geography of performance in the Madrid of a young Felipe IV, whose rise to power along with his valido Olivares sparked a "third" theatrical space, in addition to physical and mental ones, that he defines as a site of confrontation and struggle. Juan Luis Suárez explores the notion of time and the influence of painting on the comedia nueva. Elizabeth Wright examines the issue of patronage with the garden of the Duque de Lerma as a symbolic space in Lope de Vega's trajectory as a court dramatist. Edward Friedman studies two plays by Lope and two by Calderón and their "anxiety of influence" à la Harold Bloom in the adaptation of classical models for tragedy and the significance of intertextuality that ensues. José María Díez Borque offers a cogent outline of theater spaces, both outdoor and indoor areas for performance. Antonio Carreño analyzes Lope's national theater and its historical contexts since their combination revitalizes language, reevaluates Spain's past as heroic, and establishes a concept of national identity. The topic of national identity as defined in Calderón appears also in the contribution by Jesús Pérez-Magallón, [End Page 135] with a compelling bibliography on the topic that includes Benedict Anderson, Homi Bhabba, and Stuart Hall. Several articles examine the impact of Baroque theater on later periods, such as Jesús Rubio Jiménez's connections between Spanish literary tradition in Cervantes and Benavente and María José Rodríguez Sánchez de León with her analysis of Baroque theater, the eighteenth century dramatist Moratín, and the Romantics. Issues regarding canon formation appear in Marc Vitse's article on El médico de su honra; he argues that when the character Gutierre is depicted as either demon or victim, it divorces him from considerations regarding honor. José María Pozuelo Yvancos considers early interpretations of the Golden Age and the influence of José Amador de los Ríos on canon formation. Ignacio Arellano discusses the problems involved in including the "comedia cómica" as part of the canon, since canonical models privilege tragedy. Felipe Pedraza Jiménez examines the staging and performance of the "comedias de comendadores," rescued from oblivion by the popularity of Fuenteovejuna with its impressive stage history. Luciano García Lorenzo examines the neglect of performances of the autos sacramentales in recent decades, although he does discuss the Fiesta barroca in 1992, which had as its centerpiece Calderón's El gran mercado del mundo, and notes the negative reception of it at the time. This is most curious because autos, such as El gran teatro del mundo recast as a...


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pp. 135-136
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