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Appears in Collections:eTheses from Faculty of Arts and Humanities legacy departments
Title: Thomas Southerne's 'Sir Anthony Love' : A critical edition
Author(s): Bowen, Edward Kenneth
Issue Date: 1984
Publisher: University of Stirling
Abstract: The editor has collated 27 copies of the five editions of Sir Anthony Love, published in 1691, 1698, 1713, 1721, and 1774. No authorial revisions or corrections are apparent, but collation has revealed new variants which have been noted, along with complete textual notations of substantive and accidental variations. The intent has been to devise a text accessible to the modern actor and reader, without loss of the original manuscript’s flavour. The first edition has served as the copy text, on the assumption that it best approximates Southerne’s acting text. Introductory material to the text begins with biographical information on the playwright, including a synopsis and brief analysis of each of his plays, set against a background of contemporary historical events. This combination seeks to provide a clearer picture of Southerne and to trace development of his major themes. Chapter two gives the play’s production history and explores its theatrical origins, including Aphra Behn’s work and Mrs. Behn herself as a possible model for its protagonist. Sources for other characters may be perceived in the biographical information given each member of the original cast. The third chapter is devoted to analysis of the play, including historical/biographical backgrounc, contributory philosophical trends and plot synopsis. The final section deals with the central theme of Sir Anthony Love - the conflict between appearance and reality – and explores Southerne’s use of Restoration theatrical conventions to underscore philosophical and social commentary. The critical view of Sir Anthony Love as a minor, and poorly constructed example of the comedy of intrigue results from lack of careful examination, understandable, based on its conventional appearance. In reality, it is a remarkable example of structural unity: its glossy surface conceals a meticulous sceptical examination of contemporary values, a metaphorical expression of its central theme.
Type: Thesis or Dissertation

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