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On Speed and Restlessness: Calderón’s Urban Kaleidoscope

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Chapter Summary

Four hundred years after the publication of Lope de Vega's groundbreaking Arte nuevo de hacer comedias, scholars working on early modern Spanish literature are still discovering new and exciting plays that yield fascinating clues on the craft of writing and staging theater as well as on the contexts that witnessed and inspired its creation. One of the greatest hermeneutic challenges is precisely the need to find a more appropriate balance between canonical and non-canonical texts and, to that end, no better way to reach it than paying more attention to all the little-known gems of our national tradition. As the author of a kaleidoscopic legacy, Pedro Calderón de la Barca has suffered from this tendency like very few comediantes have: it has only been in recent years that some of his lesser-known plays have started to be edited, translated, and staged successfully.

Keywords: canonical text; kaleidoscopic legacy; Lope de Vega; Pedro Calderón de la Barca; Spanish literature



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