Wednesday 12 June 2013


If The Tragedy of Mariam is “about” anything, it is about rank—and the privileges of moral courage and superiority that rank inherently bestows. Mariam’s whiteness against the blackness of the characters of Salome and of Herod does constitute the moral encoding of raced subjects—but the “race” in question is a difference in rank. In early modern England, the term “race” commonly referred to family lineage, or bloodline, and relied upon pervasive notions of what were believed to constitute the properties of blood. Carey’s Mariam posits moral differences that are literally a feature of the blood—or humoral disposition—and that are revealed in the external complexion of her characters.

Professor Kimberly Anne Coles, School of Advanced Study Visiting Fellow

Chair: Professor Roger Kain, CBE, FBA, Dean of the School of Advanced Study

Venue: Room 246 (Senate House)