Work on my medicine: Physiologies and anatomies in Othello

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Book Chapter

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Othello is a body-intensive text. At the core, Othello is a study of gross anatomy and physiology, an investigation into how bodies both condition and restrict desire. The play connects body fluids, anatomies, and physiologies with specific characters and action (Pechter). In fact, the script is a prescription for understanding the strong role Elizabethan medicine played in the anatomy of plot and characters: their physiological markers, so to speak (Kolin). These markers have all too often been ignored or glossed over from a scientific, etiological point of view. Contemporary literary theory, which has focused on representation in and of the text as body and the body as text, affords me an aperture with which to explore the physiological dimensions of the play.

Publication Title

Othello: New Critical Essays

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