Pastoral Retreat and Green Texts: The 2009 Globe Production of Love’s Labour’s Lost

Abstract

Shakespeare’s Love’s Labour’s Lost (1594–1595) engages with ideas intrinsic to pastoral, particularly the notion of retreat from central urbanity to an alternative space, and the juxtaposition of the active and the contemplative life. Yet the play receives scant attention in critical accounts of Shakespearean pastoral. The Globe’s 2009 stage production, directed by Dominic Dromgoole, emphasised the play’s pastoral aspects aesthetically and ideologically. It revived Dromgoole’s 2007 production and was filmed, under the direction of Ian Russell, for an international series of cinema broadcasts and released on DVD. This article argues that the production, through giving particular emphasis and new theatrical life to the pastoral dimensions of the play, generated renewed focus on the play’s political paradox and human dilemmas.

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Published 30 June 2015 in Afterlives of Pastoral. Subjects: Pastoral literature, Pastoral poetry, Shakespeare, William, Shakespearean drama.

Cite as: Bladen, Victoria. ‘Pastoral Retreat and Green Texts: The 2009 Globe Production of Love’s Labour’s Lost.’ Australian Literary Studies, vol. 30, no. 2, 2015. https://doi.org/10.20314/als.6fad022437.