The Spanish Tragedy as Intertext for Orhan Pamuk's Kar (Snow)
In Kar (2002; English version Snow, 2004), Orhan Pamuk uses the genre of early modern English revenge tragedy, specifically Thomas Kyd's The Spanish Tragedy, to emphasize the theme of revenge and to illuminate his ideas about women's agency within Islamic culture. Through his departures from the generic expectations of revenge tragedy, Pamuk conveys a sense of the moral complexity of the many acts of revenge in the novel. In another important alteration of this intertext, during the play-within-the-novel performance of The Spanish Tragedy, Kadife, who plays the Bel-imperia role, goes “off script” by not committing suicide on stage. Through these changes to his source text, Pamuk provides a complex view of guilt and innocence that supports his nuanced view of the “East-West” debates that animate Turkish religion and politics; additionally, he creates a view of women within Islam and within Turkish culture that emphasizes their potential for strength and autonomy.
PAMUK, ORHAN; KAR; SNOW; KYD, THOMAS; THE SPANISH TRAGEDY; REVENGE TRAGEDY; KADIFE; BEL-IMPERIA
English Language and Literature
Rachel Hile (2009).
The Spanish Tragedy as Intertext for Orhan Pamuk's Kar (Snow). Mediterranean Studies.18 (1), 143-167.