The Italian Actress and the Foundations of Early Modern European Theatre: Performing Female Sexual Identities on the Commedia dell'Arte Stage

December 2008
Early Theatre;2008, Vol. 11 Issue 2, p181
Academic Journal
The article examines the emergence of professional actresses in the commedia dell'arte stage in Italy and explores the role of actress Isabella Andreini's contribution to early modern European theatre from the early 1560s to the early 1600s. According to the article, conflicting debates condemned the use of actresses as sexual attractions and praised them for their performances. Theatrical representations at Carnival were allegedly regarded as being in the service of the devil. The history of the fetish in modern Western society is traced.


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