Abstract

In 1772, a leading Viennese playright wrote an adaptation of Macbeth to replace a banned Don Juan scenario that had run for decades during the Octave of All Souls. If Macbeth and Don Juan strike the modern mind as an odd pairing, such was also the case in Enlightened Vienna: the playwright himself wrote a lengthly apologia, invoking the authority of Aristotle, Marmontel, and Moses Mendelssohn, to rationalize the moral monstrosity of his tragic protagonist. The Viennese Macbeth and its commentary generated considerable controversy, and from this conflict arise the first sustained attempts to articulate a poetics of Don Juan theater, a repertory that the critical community had hitherto largely passed over in silence.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1086-315X
Print ISSN
0013-2586
Pages
pp. 237-254
Launched on MUSE
2012-01-26
Open Access
No
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