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Open Access Publications from the University of California

The Hospitable Globe: Persia and the Early Modern English Stage

  • Author(s): Kaufman, Sheiba Kian
  • Advisor(s): Lupton, Julia R
  • et al.

The Hospitable Globe examines how English representations of Persia present paradigms of interreligious and intercultural hospitality for early modern and Shakespearean drama. Rather than staging an antagonistic, non-Christian foe, English playwrights depict Persia and its legendary monarchs, such as Cyrus the Great, as alternative spaces and figures of cosmopolitanism in the period. By focusing on a group of Persian-themed plays staged between 1561-1696 in conversation with Shakespeare’s works, European peace proposals, and theories and practices of hospitality, this project reconstructs a more hospitable form of global relationships in the early modern period by contending that cross-cultural exchange, then and now, is not limited to models of conflict, contest, and domination.

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