El muerto disimulado / Presumed Dead

Ângela de Azevedo

Edition by Valerie Hegstrom, Translation by Catherine Larson, Introduction and Notes by V. Hegstrom and C. Larson

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ISBN: 9781786940728

Publication: December 31, 2017

Series: Aris & Phillips Hispanic Classics

Hegstrom and Larson have created an annotated new edition and first-ever translation of Ângela de Azevedo’s vibrant comedy, El muerto disimulado / Presumed Dead, to promote the recuperation of early modern plays authored by women. The book contains a comprehensive introduction that describes Spanish theatre in its Golden Age; what is known of the author’s life and times; contemporary performances of the text; and an extensive analysis of the comedy.
The play, originally written in Spanish, is set in Lisbon, although the main plot involves a murder that supposedly took place after a fleet of Portuguese nobles arrived in Nice. The murder mystery affects the rest of the comedy: the male lead is actually only presumed dead, and his return to Lisbon upsets the plans for revenge and the marriages of numerous other couples. Like much early modern theatre, this play contains typical themes of love and betrayal and plot elements such as swordfights and cross-dressing characters, although here, both women and men cross-dress. Azevedo engages with the literary, theatrical, and social conventions that influenced many of the dramatic texts of her time, and she employs witty dialogue to elaborate her self-conscious game-playing with the very nature of the theatre.

Catherine Larson is Professor Emerita in Spanish at Indiana University, U.S.

Valerie Hegstrom is Associate Professor in Spanish & Comparative Literature and Coordinator of Women’s Studies at Brigham Young University, U.S.


Format: Paperback

Size: 210 x 147 mm

224 Pages

2 B&W illustrations

ISBN: 9781786940728

Publication: December 31, 2017

Series: Aris & Phillips Hispanic Classics

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