The Duchess of Malfi - Criticism
F. L. Lucas
Both Webster and his Duchess seem to sit “bayed about with madmen”.
Webster was a “master of scenes”.
The Duchess comes “the nearest to Shakespeare of anything we have upon record”.
“The strength of Webster’s confest mastership lies simply in his acquaintance with vicious nature in general … handles these horrors with little or no moral purpose”.
“Ramshackle looseness of structure and barbarous violence of effect, hideous cacophonies, neither verse nor prose, Bedlam-broke-loose … poor Webster”.
Webster “concentrated his chief energies on repulsive themes and characters”.
T. S. Eliot
“a genius directed toward chaos”
In the poem Whispers of Immortality,
“Webster was much possessed by death