13 Moons, Twelve Nights: Calendars, Cycles, Time Out of Time and Gender Difference (A Note on 'Twelfth Night')
7 Pages Posted: 24 Nov 2007 Last revised: 12 Mar 2008
Date Written: 2008
This paper focuses on the notion of the time between the winter solstice and the beginning of the year as a time with a special status, a time out of time as it were, rooted in a tradition of folklore and popular calendrics. The notion of a time that stops, associated in Twelfth Night to a lull, a time of waiting, and of mourning, is combined in Shakespeare's play with the interruption of practical time during a theatrical performance or a festival. This no man's time is shown to have gender-specific connotations rooted in the mismatch of the lunar and solar calendars. Shakespeare's play with generic confusion in the play is characteristic of the suspension of the normal order of time, before the reassertion of renewed time and accepted gender roles when the new cycle of time begins for good.
Note: Downloadable document is in Spanish.
Keywords: time, calendar, Shakespeare,Twelfth Night, solstice, gender, lunar cycle, mourning
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