Faraway Settings: Spanish and Chinese Theaters of the 16th and 17th Centuries, eds. Juan Pablo Gil-Osle, Frederick A. de Armas, Madrid-Frankfurt, Iberoamericana-Vervuert, 2019.
256 p., ISBN 9788491920922, 29,80 €
A comparative study of Ming and Iberian theaters has never been attempted. Thus, this book aims to provide the reader with a series of different approaches. First, through a comparison of specific works by Spanish and Chinese playwrights during the Ming and Habsburg periods, we aim to show that at ti-mes certain commonalities are in reality spaces fraught with misunderstanding. A melancholic character in Spain would not be the same as a melancholic figure in Chinese theater. A parti-cular plant or flower had completely different symbolic meanings. However, it is curious to note how certain character types in both theaters resemble each other; and how the in-teraction between actors and audience would show clear parallels. At the same time, this is a book that also finds the thrill of corresponden-ces and affinities as they are recovered through modern staging, climate change, universality of emotions, representations of friendship, folk characters, metaphors and dreams.