Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Dr. Glen Newkirk


John Webster is not a simple writer to interpret and understand. In his own age he did not gain a great deal of prominence; the eighteenth century all but ignored him, since the Romantic Revival he has risen to rival Harlowe and Jonson for the prized position next to Shakespeare. There will always be readers who reject his literary efforts with moral distaste or aesthetic contempt. Webster has little to say to those who are cold to the poetry of language and action, or to those who look for the logic and stagecraft of an Ibsen. Even in the two plays upon which Webster’s fame rests, The Duchess of Malfi and The White Devil, these readers will find things which are crude and coarse as well as, at times disconnected and illogically-constructed materials. But for the most discriminating people of literary taste, these plays offer fascination.


A Thesis Presented to the Department of English and the Faculty of the Graduate College University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree Master of Arts University of Nebraska at Omaha. Copyright 1968 Bernice Lucille Derra.

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