Publication details [#2953]

Bregazzi, Josephine. 2000. Chaos is a man: Gender and metaphors of disintegration in the Jacobean Drama. ELUA. Estudios de Lingüística 1 : 95–124. 30 pp.


The article discusses the more salient metaphorical networks used in Jacobean drama, which typically portrays the world as in a state of chaos. Seeing the world in a state of flux is typical of those periods in history in which the sense of instability, unpredictability and insecurity take hold of the population. Chaos is thus portrayed by means of metaphorical frameworks related to disorder, disintegration and discontrol in a fair sample of the dramatic productions of the first decades of the seventeenth century. Incommensurate appetites, ineffectual or corrupt institutions or physical and mental disintegration trigger the use of certain recurrent metaphors which serve as activators of certain ideological frames or grids through which the dramatists confounded contemporary censorship and offered ambiguous social critique. Although women are often constructed by males as the agents of that chaos, it is in fact the men who refuse to regard women as subjects and who freely interpret their own behavioural and cognitive codes. (Begoña Casasnovas Gil, Ruiz de Mendoza Group)