2003 Bevington Award for Best New Book

David Bevington Award
Award Year: 

Winner: Ehrstine, Glenn. Theater, Culture, and Community in Reformation Bern: 1523–1555. Leiden, NL: Brill, 2002.

This study of Bernese theatre during the Protestant Reformation describes in detail its transformation from its medieval Catholic precedents to Protestant Carnival plays and, finally, to more "refined" humanist dramas. Ehrstine sheds considerable light on broader questions of the relationship between Reformed Protestantism and the theater, bringing out the central role of that theatre in promoting change. He emphasizes the multimediality of Reformation theatre in Bern, invoking along the way fields as diverse as carnival theory and historical Protestant theology. Ehrstine’s book is a model of thorough and careful theatrical research, grounded in a profound knowledge of the cultural context, and written in a clear and readable style.