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By Jan Bloemendal

During this quantity fifteen contributions speak about the position or roles of early glossy ('literary' and non-literary) types of theatre within the formation of public opinion or its use in making statements in public or inner most debates.

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Drama, Performance and Debate: Theatre and Public Opinion in the Early Modern Period

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24 Conclusion It would be gratuitous to draw general conclusions from only one example of the importance and the political role of drama in Amiens at the end of the fifteenth century. However, I hope to have shed light on the complexity of one particular play. Although performed during a ‘neutral’ Epiphany dinner of a religious brotherhood, it reveals to some extent a political message. Although performed within a restricted circle and for a specific public, it certainly reflects the general state of mind of the inhabitants of Amiens.

In both plays, the People are necessarily helpless and have to put their fate in the hands of more powerful figures who swear to improve their condition. Povre Commun puts his faith in the representatives of the Church whereas Va-Partout, Ne-te-Bouge and Tout-le-Monde in the end ask for help from the French Soldier. However, they are presented as more active than Povre Commun or other figures of the People in many plays, as they have a heated argument with the two Ladies and even try to use force to take Bon Temps back from them.

Unpublished doctoral thesis) [Un théâtre des frontières (XVe-XVIe siècles) (Orléans: Paradigme, 2011)]. Lavéant, Katell, ‘Le théâtre du Nord et la Réforme: Un procès d’acteurs dans la région de Lille en 1563’, European Medieval Drama, 11 (2007), pp. 59–77. Lecocq, Georges, Histoire du théâtre en Picardie depuis son origine jusqu’à la fin du XVIe siècle (Genève: Slatkine Reprints, 1971; first ed. Paris: H. Menu, 1880). Lecuppre-Desjardin, Elodie, La ville des cérémonies: Essai sur la communication politique dans les anciens Pays-Bas bourguignons (Turnhout: Brepols, 2004).

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