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This free course, John Webster, The Duchess of Malfi, concentrates on Acts 1 and 2 of John Webster's Renaissance tragedy, The Duchess of Malfi. It focuses on the representation of marriage for love and the social conflicts to which it gives rise. The course is designed to hone your skills of textual analysis.
After studying this course, you should be able to:
- understand the treatment of the themes of love and death in Acts 1 and 2 of John Webster’s play The Duchess of Malfi
- examine other related themes and concerns of Acts 1 and 2
- carry out textual analysis
- recognise some of the historical contexts of the play.
- Current section: Introduction
- Learning outcomes
- Act 1: setting the scene
- Act 2: discovery
- Keep on learning
- Further reading
Study this free course
Enrol to access the full course, get recognition for the skills you learn, track your progress and on completion gain a statement of participation to demonstrate your learning to others. Make your learning visible!
John Webster, The Duchess of Malfi
This course, on the first two acts of John Webster’s Renaissance tragedy The Duchess of Malfi, focuses on the representation of the theme of love and marriage in the Malfi court, and the social conflicts to which it gives rise. The course guides you through the first part of the play and will help you to develop your skills of textual analysis.
This course focuses mainly on Acts 1 and 2 of the play. You should make sure that you have read these two acts of the play before you read the course.
The edition of the play that is used in this course is the Pearson Longman (2009) edition, edited by Monica Kendall. However, there are free versions available online that you may prefer to use.
This free course is an adapted extract from the Open University course A230 :. It can also be found in the publication Anita Pacheco and David Johnson (eds) (2012) The Renaissance and Long Eighteenth Century, published by The Open University and Bloomsbury Academic.
Copyright & revisions
Originally published: Wednesday, 6th January 2016
Last updated on: Wednesday, 6th January 2016
- Creative-Commons: The Open University is proud to release this free course under a Creative Commons licence. However, any third-party materials featured within it are used with permission and are not ours to give away. These materials are not subject to the Creative Commons licence. See terms and conditions. Full details can be found in the Acknowledgements and our FAQs section.
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