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Sir William Davenant's American Operas
The Modern Language Review
Vol. 96, No. 2 (Apr., 2001), pp. 323-333
Published by: Modern Humanities Research Association
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3737341
Page Count: 11
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This article considers the relationship between Davenant's "The Cruelty of the Spaniards in Peru" (1658) and "The History of Sir Francis Drake" (1659), and the discourse that surrounded and followed Oliver Cromwell's Western Design, an imperial initiative to seize Hispaniola in 1654. Drawing on Bakhtin's theory of the dialogic imagination, it argues, that, while Davenant's operas harmonize with Puritan foreign policy in some respects, clearly there is dissonance in that Davenant avoids overt providentialism and emphasizes the courtly virtues of honour and fame. These royalist ideals form a significant part of Davenant's stylistic profile and imperialist rationale.
The Modern Language Review © 2001 Modern Humanities Research Association