Juliet is the Sun


The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 24.0117  Wednesday, 20 March 2013


From:        Marianne Kimura <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         March 20, 2013 8:24:50 AM EDT

Subject:     Juliet is the Sun


Dear SHAKSPER members,


Under the pseudonym Gemma Nishiyama, I have written a novel entitled Juliet is the Sun, about Viola, “shipwrecked” after fleeing the Fukushima nuclear accident for the mountains of Western Japan. Leaving her estranged husband back in the north, and facing an uncertain future, Viola believes her life has been a failure. But the ghost of Shakespeare appears in her life and things dramatically improve. 


Saying “my way is to conjure you” (a line from As You Like It) the ghost stages performances for her. Viola thus learns that a mystery, a hidden identity of a mysterious figure who needs to be acknowledged, lies concealed in one of Shakespeare’s plays. She reaches out to a professor of Renaissance philosophy at the local university for some historical background and perspective. Viola’s estranged husband Kazuo, another academic, also gets drawn into the mystery.  


Like The DaVinci Code, Juliet is the Sun reveals that a major artwork has been concealing an important secret for centuries—in plain sight! (Indeed, the best secrets are always the ones hiding in plain sight!)


As a basic interpretive framework, I have used the original research I published (under my real name) relating to the concept of a cosmic and solar energy-related secret play in Romeo and Juliet. A few other plays (Hamlet, King Lear, Macbeth, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Much Ado About Nothing) are also shown in the course of the novel to also be Renaissance puzzle boxes that use this secret (Hermetic) solar structure.


The name and philosophical importance (to Shakespeare) of a natural philosopher who was executed in Rome by the Catholic Church for heresy in 1600 is unveiled—and his secret identity as a character hiding in one of Shakespeare’s plays is also revealed.


The novel is set in the mountains of Western Japan (where I live), a green, wooded and mysterious place with ghosts, legends, ruined castles, Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples. Japanese folkloric spirits, mythic foxes and Shinto mythology (which has a living Sun Goddess) all appear in the novel. Ninjas and Ninjutsu (the art and philosophy of Ninja) play an important role. 


Juliet is the Sun spans one year exactly, in tribute to the sun and our earth’s rotation around our nearest and most useful star. There are also many quotes from Shakespeare’s plays used in many ways—as decoration, as dialogue, and as comic counterpoint. Some of Shakespeare’ s famous characters magically appear.


The soul of the novel belongs to manga, (Japanese comic books)— episodic, with a light-hearted, popular style, an earnest heroine, a mysterious quest and visitors from supernatural worlds. 


One of my goals was to use fiction (instead of non-fiction) to try interpretation, and I aimed for something dramatic, passionate, clandestine, free and zen ~~~ a true adventure. 


Finally, Viola’s passion for life and for love is reawakened . . . but should she publish her academic findings or not—that is the question!


In addition, there are a few “puzzle boxes” hidden in the text of my novel. (Readers may hunt for these (unmarked) puzzles and solve them, hopefully.)


Who knew that Shakespeare could be zen?! 


Juliet is the Sun is available now on Amazon as an ebook. 


Marianne Kimura


‘Women of Will’ and ‘Living with Shakespeare’


The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 24.0115  Tuesday, 19 March 2013


From:        John F Andrews <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         March 18, 2013 6:07:14 PM EDT

Subject:     ‘Women of Will’ and ‘Living with Shakespeare’



Tina Packer Presents ‘Women of Will’


Sunday, April 21, at 3:00 p.m.   

The Gym at Hudson, 243 Thompson Street

Washington Square South 

Discounted Tickets at $40


Part master-class, part performance, all magical: these are among the descriptions that audiences and reviewers alike have used to convey their enthusiasm for WOMEN OF WILL, a scintillating, thematically rich presentation devised by and starring TINA PACKER. A playwright, actor, and director who founded Shakespeare & Company, Ms. Packer has long presided over an institution that presents the world’s most enduring classics in a Berkshires setting that serves as one of today’s most influential incubators of theatrical talent. In partnership with NIGEL GORE, a performer who has earned plaudits in a wide range of stellar roles, Ms. Packer offers playgoers a special Shakespeare’s Birthday matinee that will be followed by a lively conversation with the Shakespeare Guild’s John Andrews. To obtain tickets at a steeply discounted rate, simply call 212-352-3101 or visit and cite Women as the code you use to place your order.   


Susannah Carson on ‘Living with Shakespeare’


Monday, April 22, at 7:30 p.m.    

National Arts Club, 15 Gramercy Park South

No Charge, but Reservations Advised


“There is no God but God, and his name is William Shakespeare.” So asserts Harold Bloom in his foreword to LIVING WITH SHAKESPEARE, a new anthology by SUSANNAH CARSON. A Yale-educated writer who now lives in London, Ms. Carson has compiled observations and personal reminiscences by more than three dozen luminaries, among them authors Isabel Allende, Margaret Drabble, Joyce Carol Oates, and Jane Smiley, filmmakers Ralph Fiennes and Julie Taymor, and actors F. Murray Abraham, Brian Cox, James Earl Jones, Ben Kingsley, Anthony Sher, and Harriet Walter. What these and other contributors share is a conviction that “we live in Shakespeare’s world,” an environment that has been “fine-tuned for us” by a poet whose vision is so potent “that it’s difficult to conceive who we would be” if he’d never existed. Published in time to mark the 449th celebration of Shakespeare’s birth, Ms. Carson’s book will be on display, and she’ll be happy to inscribe copies for those who wish to purchase them.



Visit for more information about these and other offerings.


Shakespeare, Music and Performance—A Conference


The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 24.0113  Monday, 18 March 2013


From:        David Lindley <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         March 18, 2013 7:30:30 AM EDT

Subject:     Shakespeare, Music and Performance—A Conference



A conference entitled Shakespeare, Music and Performance is taking place at Shakespeare’s Globe in London from 3-5 May, 2013. It brings together musicologist, literary and theatre historians and composers and musical practitioners to look at the varied contribution music has made to Shakespearean performance in the theatre and on film from the 16th to the 21st centuries. Full details, including a provisional programme, are to be found at:


Thanks to the MHRA there are two bursaries to assist postgraduate students in attending the conference. Details at the same URL.


David Lindley


CFP: Levinas and Early Modern Literature


The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 24.0110  Thursday, 14 March 2013


From:        Kent Lehnhof <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         March 12, 2013 6:40:00 PM EDT

Subject:     CFP: Levinas and Early Modern Literature


CFP: Levinas and Early Modern Literature (edited collection)


Proposals sought for an edited collection exploring the relationship between the writings of Emmanuel Levinas and the writings of Shakespeare and his contemporaries. For consideration, please submit a chapter proposal (500-1000 words), a brief bio (<250 words), and an abbreviated CV (<3 pages). All submissions will be acknowledged.


Deadline for proposals is 6/15/2013

Delivery of completed chapters will be expected by 1/15/2014


Kent Lehnhof

Chapman University

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Sex before Sex


The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 24.0101  Tuesday, 12 March 2013


From:        Dylan Hester <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         March 11, 2013 1:21:16 PM EDT

Subject:     Sex before Sex


How do contemporary notions of sex acts distort views of sex in literature of other eras? 


SEX BEFORE SEX: Figuring the Act in Early Modern England

Edited by James M. Bromley and Will Stockton

Afterword by Valerie Traub

University of Minnesota Press | 336 pages | 2013

ISBN 978-0-8166-8077-1 | paperback 

ISBN 978-0-8166-8076-4 | cloth 


Sex before Sex makes clear that we cannot simply transfer our contemporary notions of what constitutes a sex act into the past and expect them to be true for those who were then reading literature and watching plays. The contributors confront how our current critical assumptions about definitions of sex restrict our understanding of representations of sexuality in early modern England. 



James M. Bromley is assistant professor of English at Miami University. He is the author of Intimacy and Sexuality in the Age of Shakespeare.


Will Stockton is associate professor of English at Clemson University. He is the author of Playing Dirty: Sexuality and Waste in Early Modern Comedy (Minnesota, 2011).


Valerie Traub is the Frederick G. L. Huetwell Professor of English and Women’s Studies at the University of Michigan.


For more information, including the table of contents, visit the book’s webpage:


Please email me if you have any questions.


Heather Skinner, Publicist

University of Minnesota Press

111 3rd Ave S, Ste. 290

Minneapolis, MN 55401-2520

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Much Ado About Nothing Trailer


The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 24.0100  Tuesday, 12 March 2013


From:        Hardy Cook <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         March 10, 2013 2:37:17 PM EDT

Subject:     Much Ado About Nothing Trailer 


[Editor’s Note: Thanks to Mike Jensen for calling my attention to this article and trailer. –Hardy]


From The Week <>


The first trailer for Joss Whedon’s Much Ado About Nothing


By Scott Meslow


The Avengers director gathers some of his favorite actors for a decidedly small-scale adaptation of Shakespeare’s comedy


The trailer: After the bluster and bombast of 2012’s superhero mashup The Avengers — it was the highest-grossing movie of the year, and is the third-highest grossing movie of all time — director Joss Whedon took a break from blockbusters by directing a film that couldn’t possibly be more different: A small-scale, black-and-white adaptation of Shakespeare’s classic comedy Much Ado About Nothing. The movie, which debuts in the U.S. on June 7, was filmed in just 12 days at Whedon’s personal residence in Santa Monica, Calif. Much Ado About Nothing boasts a cast almost entirely comprised of fan-favorite actors from Whedon’s past projects, including Alex Denisof as Benedick and Amy Acker as Beatrice — both alums of the TV show Angel — Nathan Fillion, of Fox’s shortlived series Firefly, as Dogberry, and Clark Gregg (The Avengers) as Leonato. Has Whedon done the Bard justice with Much Ado About Nothing, or will the film be put to death by the wagging tongues of critics? 


The reaction: Though this is the first Much Ado About Nothing trailer released for a general audience, a few select critics have seen the film during early screenings at film festivals — and fortunately, the reaction has largely been positive. “It’s rather joyous to see a name director pursue a true passion project and realize it with simplicity, elegance, and emotional directness,” says Hannah McGill at The List. “Whedon and Shakespeare are truly a match made in heaven,” agrees Tom Clift at Moviedex. And the cast lives up to the material, says Linda Holmes at NPR: “A project this simple would be nowhere without the actors, and Whedon gets fine work out of just about everybody.”


A New Variorum Edition Notice


The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 24.0099  Tuesday, 12 March 2013


From:        Paul Werstine <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         March 11, 2013 10:47:30 AM EDT

Subject:     A New Variorum Edition Notice


A New Variorum Edition of Shakespeare


The series is seeking an editor to bring to completion the volume on The Two Gentlemen of Verona that was begun by the late Trevor Howard-Hill.


The publisher of this series is the Modern Language Association of America. Title pages and prefaces scrupulously record the contributions of all who work on the volumes. Editorial principles are available at  Please contact Paul Werstine, co-general editor, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The latest published volumes in the series are The Winter’s Tale, edited by Robert Kean Turner and Virginia Westling Haas (2005), and The Comedy of Errors, edited by Standish Henning (2011). King Lear, edited by Richard Knowles, is at press. 


Shakespeare Beyond Doubt: Publication and Webinar

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 24.0098  Tuesday, 12 March 2013

From:        Paul Edmondson <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         Sunday, March 10, 2013 12:58 PM

Subject:     Shakespeare Beyond Doubt: Publication and Webinar


[Editor’s Note: I have adapted the information below from various e-mails I have received from Paul Edmondson. –Hardy]


The Cambridge University Press will launch Shakespeare Beyond Doubt: Evidence, Argument, Controversy with The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust at this year’s celebration of Shakespeare’s Birthday in Stratford and at The Shakespeare Centre.



The book will also form the basis of an event at this year’s Stratford-upon-Avon Literary Festival, a webinar towards the end of April sponsored by C.U.P. (and hosted by The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust), and a podcast to be made with the University of Warwick in time for Shakespeare’s Birthday. 


You might like to let your colleagues, students, friends, and contacts know about a webinar, ‘Proving Shakespeare’, we’re hosting about Shakespeare Beyond Doubt: Evidence, Argument, Controversy on Friday 26 April at 6.30 pm (British Time). You can register for it free of charge via this link:


I’ll be chairing a discussion for an hour with Stanley Wells and we are delighted to be joined by our special guest, Ros Barber, author of The Marlowe Papers: A Novel in Verse. If you sign up you’ll be able to listen to webinar live and submit questions during the discussion. You can sign up by clicking here.


Shakespeare Beyond Doubt: Evidence, Argument, Controversy

Paperback (ISBN-13: 9781107603288)

Hardback (ISBN:9781107017597)


Did Shakespeare write Shakespeare, and why should we care? 

  • A collection of essays by major authorities in the field discuss the authorship debate surrounding Shakespeare’s work 
  • Provides a wide range of discussions of all significant aspects of the topic in a readable and engaging style 
  • Offers a comprehensive and grounded scholarly exploration of this hotly debated field

Shakespeare Beyond Doubt: Evidence, Argument, Controversy is organized in three sections. The first is ‘Sceptics’. There you will find essays on the most popular alternative nominees for the authorship, namely Sir Francis Bacon, Christopher Marlowe, and Edward de Vere, the Earl of Oxford. These have been produced by world experts on those three subjects (Alan Stewart, Charles Nicholl, and Alan Nelson), all of whom set out authoritatively to demonstrate how none of those nominees could have written, or indeed were capable of having written, the works of Shakespeare. The ‘unreadable’ work of Delia Bacon is re-appraised by Graham Holderness and Matt Kubus has contributed a piece about the many other ‘unusual suspects’ who have been nominated over the years.


Section two, ‘Shakespeare as Author’, presents the evidence for Shakespeare and includes an essay which considers how we construct early modern biographies by Andrew Hadfield and an overview of all the allusions to Shakespeare up to 1642 by Stanley Wells. John Jowett shows how we know Shakespeare collaborated (thereby making a nonsense of any ‘cover-up’ story), and Mac Jackson shows what we can learn from stylometric tests for different authorial hands. James Mardock and Eric Rasmussen look at what the textual evidence of the printed works tells us about their author, and Dave Kathman finds Warwickshire writ large across Shakespeare’s work. Carol Rutter demonstrates that the whole of Shakespeare was written by someone who attended grammar school but who did not need to have attended university, and Barbara Everett shows how absurd it is to read the works as truthful windows onto Shakespeare’s own life.


The third and final section, ‘A Cultural Phenomenon: Did Shakespeare Write Shakespeare?’, includes articles by Kate McLuskie on conspiracy theories, by Andrew Murphy on the clash between professional academics and amateurs with regard to Delia Bacon, and by Paul Franssen on how the authorship discussion has been treated in works of fiction. Stuart Hampton-Reeves critiques the anti-Shakespearian ‘Declaration of Reasonable Doubt’ and Douglas Lanier critiques the film Anonymous. My contribution is a piece about the so-called ‘Shakespeare Establishment’ and the authorship discussion. 


The volume closes with an ‘Afterword’ by James Shapiro and ‘A Selected Reading List’ by Hardy Cook.


The Inner Life of Shakespeare’s Sonnets


The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 24.0095  Friday, 8 March 2013


From:        Red Bull Theater <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         March 1, 2013 11:26:16 AM EST

Subject:     The Inner Life of Shakespeare’s Sonnets 


Monday March 25, 7:30pm 


A Talk

Shakespeare and The Sonnets


John Wolfson

Curator of Rare Books, Globe Theatre


Randy Harrison and Byron Jennings


The Inner Life of Shakespeare’s Sonnets


John Wolfson describes how the sonnets related to Shakespeare’s personal life and how scholars have subsequently interpreted and mis-interpreted them. A unique and pithy evening of witty, insightful scholarship and passionate acting.






Lucille Lortel Theater 

121 Christopher Street 

Corner of Perry & Hudson


Conference Notice: Popes and the Papacy


The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 24.0094  Friday, 8 March 2013


From:        Duncan Salkeld <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         March 8, 2013 5:32:25 AM EST

Subject:     Conference Notice: Popes and the Papacy


Dear All,


An exciting interdisciplinary two-day conference will be held at Sussex University, Falmer, Brighton, UK on 24-26 June 2013 on ‘Popes and the Papacy in Early Modern English Culture’.



The conference scope is very broad and will cover diverse aspects of early modern culture, including anti-Catholicism, literary and pictorial representations of the papacy, recusant culture, diplomacy and correspondence, art and architecture, religious controversy, and moral improprieties. 


The deadline for short paper proposals is 15 March, but this may be extended. Short paper proposals are still welcome.


Keynote speakers are: Peter Lake (Vanderbilt University), Susannah Monta (University of Notre Dame) and Alison Shell (UCL).


Here’s a link to the conference notice:


And a link to the Call For Papers:


All the best

Duncan Salkeld


Second Annual London Shakespeare Lecture in Honor of Professor Stanley Wells, C.B.E.


The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 24.0090  Tuesday, 26 February 2013


From:        Actors From The London Stage <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         February 26, 2013 2:04:50 PM EST

Subject:     Don’t Miss Nicholas Hytner!


Sir Nicholas Hytner to Deliver Second Annual London Shakespeare Lecture in Honor of Professor Stanley Wells, C.B.E. 


The University of Notre Dame, The Shakespeare Institute and the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust present “Stand and Unfold Yourself” – How to do Shakespeare by Sir Nicholas Hytner, Artistic Director of the National Theatre. This is the second public lecture about Shakespeare in a series named in honor of former Shakespeare Institute director Professor Stanley Wells, C.B.E. The lecture will take place at Trafalgar Hall, Notre Dame London on March 5, 2013 at 6 pm GMT (1 pm ET) and will be live-streamed at:


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