This essay focuses specifically on masculine performance in the Gl 'ingannati (1532) and views the comedy's sexual play as imbued with a political discourse. The tension and disorder so precious to comedy are, in Gl 'ingannati, borne precisely from the political and sexual anxieties of the recently invaded Italy in the sack of 1527. The social disorder caused by the sack is paralleled by the sexual ‘disorder’ of the raped and sodomized protagonists. Their return to civic positions of husband, patrician or wife also marks a return to sexual normalcy. This essay further argues that Gl 'ingannati eschews a traditional gender binary to show a much more complex potentiality whereby the disempowered and previously ‘penetrated’ may threaten their own penetrating potential. The standard wedding conclusion does not resolve gender confusion, but instead institutionalizes the survival of a troublesome gender outsider, the transvestite Fabio. Gl 'ingannati teaches us that it is through the cunning use of narrative and performance that the Sienese can wed their new master, regain civic order, and still be on top.
scite is a Brooklyn-based startup that helps researchers better discover and understand research articles through Smart Citations–citations that display the context of the citation and describe whether the article provides supporting or contrasting evidence. scite is used by students researchers from around the world and is funded in part by the National Science Foundation and the National Institute on Drug Abuse of the National Institutes of Health.