• Title: Sejanus
  • Author: Ben Jonson Alvin B. Kerman Richard B. Young
  • ISBN: 9780300094695
  • Page: 217
  • Format: Paperback
  • Sejanus One of Jonson s greatest plays Sejanus has seldom been edited and is here published with full notes and introduction for the first time since Mr Barish shows that Jonsonian tragedy can be un
    One of Jonson s greatest plays, Sejanus, has seldom been edited, and is here published, with full notes and introduction, for the first time since 1911 Mr Barish shows that Jonsonian tragedy can be understood and appreciated only by clearing the mind of Shakespearean preconceptions The present edition makes the play available in a modernized text, explanatory notes glosOne of Jonson s greatest plays, Sejanus, has seldom been edited, and is here published, with full notes and introduction, for the first time since 1911 Mr Barish shows that Jonsonian tragedy can be understood and appreciated only by clearing the mind of Shakespearean preconceptions The present edition makes the play available in a modernized text, explanatory notes gloss obscure phrases ignored by previous editors, and critical notes contain extracts in English translation of the portions of Tacitus on which Jonson based his plot The critical introduction analyzes Jonson s technique of metamorphosing history into poetry Yale Ben Jonson, 3.Mr Barish is associate professor of English at the University of California.

    One Reply to “Sejanus”

    1. read at college, a searingly brilliant read, about political machinations of course, and with no illusions. The play of language is just perfect. You come away battered. Is that good? Yes.

    2. This is a moderately entertaining play to read. It moves quickly and features some nice poetry as well as a crescendo of action that leads to a surprise twist at the end. Overall, though, its purpose outweighs its art. Jonson’s theme is painted with a blunt brush. Sejanus is a stock villain. There’s little subtlety or nuance in his portrayal. Where another artist may have been ambiguous about Sejanus’ purposes, Jonson leaves no gray. Shakespeare’s Roman plays, Julius Caesar and Coriolanu [...]

    3. Those with a keen interest in the ups and downs of Imperial Rome, or the heedless comparison between this age and King James' England (even our own oily oligarchies) might find something of interest in this play. Others who have a fixation on line-for-line adaptation of classical historians like Tacitus would have a field-day here. Yet the poor unfortunate few who have stumbled upon this play and seek to be entertained have an uphill battle before them, almost as if Jonson wrote this history so [...]

    4. Much better than I expected: the story of a Caesar and the power mad General who seems to help him. It is a theme Jonson also visited in his comedies. Strongly drawn characters, an OK story, and Jonson's wit pervade. We would probably not read this play if Jonson did not write his comedies, but it is worth seeking out.

    5. The play is perhaps not the best *drama* (its first performance was a disaster apparently and it isn't too hard to guess why), but it's a good read, especially if you've read Tacitus' Annals or other works of Roman history.

    6. With powerful language and intense scenes, Jonson is not as wonderful as his admired Shakespeare (and I think he knew it at heart) but he's nonetheless one of the greatest playwrights I've read. His interpretation of the terrible fall of emperor Tiberius' favourite is both poetical and shocking.

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *