SOURCE: "Tragedy and the Age," in The Moral Vision of Jacobean Tragedy, The University of Wisconsin Press, 1960, pp. 1-46.
[In the following excerpt, Ornstein focuses on the problem of critical interpretation associated with the "hectic portraits of vice and depravity " that characterize Jacobean tragedies. He emphasizes the gradual transition between the Elizabethan and Jacobean eras, stressing the uncertainty associated with a changing epistemology.]
We applaud the Jacobean tragedians but we do not always approve of them. Their poetry seems at times superior to their principles and their sense of the theater more highly...
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