This important new study of the English mystery plays has a twofold purpose. It is concerned to investigate the antecedents of the four extant cycles and to demonstrate the dramatic value of the plays themselves The opening and concluding chapters place the plays in their historical context by discussing on the one hand the emergence and achievements of genuine religious drama (as opposed to liturgical drama) in the twelfth century and on the other the changes in taste that threw the plays into disrepute in the sixteenth century. The man part of the book analyzes the plays in detail, considering the iconographic and theological traditions that guided the dramatists in their treatment of biblical subject-matter, and also looking at the Continental drama of the time to find out what other dramatic possibilities were open to writers in the Middle Ages. -- From publisher's description.
Lower-Middle-Class Nation provides an unparalleled interdisciplinary cultural history of the lower-middle-class worker in British life since 1850. Considering highbrow, lowbrow, and middle-brow forms across literature, film, television and more, Nicola Bishop traces the development of the lower-middle-class from the mid-19th century to the present day, tackling a number of pressing, consistent concerns such as automation, commuting, and the search for a life/work balance. Above all, this book brings together ideas about class, nationhood, and gender, demonstrating that a particularly British lower-middle-class identity is constructed through the spaces and practices of the everyday. Aimed at undergraduate, postgraduates and scholars working in media and social history, literature, popular culture, cultural studies and sociology, Lower-Middle-Class Nation represents a new direction in cultural histories of work, labour, and leisure.