Early Modern theater and 'gouvernementalité' (Foucault): three pieces of Joost van den Vondel in a new light

01 January 2009 → 31 December 2014
Research Foundation - Flanders (FWO)
Research disciplines
  • Humanities
    • Linguistics
    • Theory and methodology of linguistics
    • Other languages and literary studies
early modern theater
Project description

This research project analyzes aims of three dramatic texts of the Dutch seventeenth-century poet Joost van den Vondel. More specifically to Palamedes oft murdered silliness (1625), Gijsbrecht Aemstel (1637) and Lucifer (1654). These texts will be read in light of Michel Foucaults analysis of the early modern period (16th-17th centuries) as the cradle of 'governmentality'. The documents in question are more than just illustrative of what Foucault sees as the historical core of this cultural moment. They give also shape not only thematize and propagate the ideal of the 'governmental' thinking, stage in their building and they regulate a reading and viewing trail that the obviousness of this ideological framework entrance wants to find in the capital tended audience. That reading course is aimed at the self-reflection of the reader / viewer, a state of mind which acts both as a precondition for the functioning of the governmental thinking and also the paradoxical result should be. Concretely, this project has a threefold objective which it explicitly on the cutting edge of wishes to present several research areas: (1) in the field of literary and cultural history of the Netherlands: present and to create new analyzes of these famous texts in which the text is simultaneously read and culturally specific product (see objective 2) and the formal rhetorical construct (see objective 3); in our analysis of these texts, we are very different from the recently Korsten (2006) and Prandoni (2007) assertion which Vondel theater work is a thorough explanation of the principle of sovereignty which was the pillar in the early modern period of quite a few political-theoretical reflections . (See below) (2) in terms of the philosophy of culture of modernity: we want our cultural analysis of these texts keys to a leading searchlight concept decades in the study of the early modern period has come to the fore: Michel Foucaults " gouvernementalité ". We also want to further refine the framework of its analysis and make adjustments on the basis of the studied text files and the usefulness of Foucault's concept also aftoetsen to related concepts like Stephen Greenblatts "Renaissance Self-Fashioning" (1980) and Hans Blume Bergs "Selbstbehauptung" (1986 ). (3) in terms of the theoretical literature: we want to analyze these texts under the hermeneutic reading model in the reception aesthetics of Wolfgang Iser has most prolific representative for our purposes, the text is seen as a rhetorical construction the reader should be instantiated on the basis of present 'appeal structure "in the text. Conversely, we want our corpus show that this reading method text ideal underlies it has clear historical ties with this period studied: the text as the individual reader to potentially our view, realizing a typical product of the early modern culture "gouvernementalité".