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Home :: Archive :: 1994 :: August ::
Re: PC and ACT *Shrew*s
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 5, No. 0692.  Tuesday, 23 August 1994.
 
(1)     From:   Peter Paolucci <
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        Date:   Monday, 22 Aug 1994 22:08:39 -0400
        Subj:   Political Correctness & The Shrew
 
(2)     From:   Fran Teague <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 23 Aug 94 09:42:18 EDT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 5.0691  Re: ACT and Moonlighting *Shrew*s
 
(3)     From:   Larry Soller <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 23 Aug 1994 06:45:00 -0700 (MST)
        Subj:   RE: SHK 5.0691 Re: ACT and Moonlighting *Shrew*s
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Peter Paolucci <
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Date:           Monday, 22 Aug 1994 22:08:39 -0400
Subject:        Political Correctness & The Shrew
 
Good solid feminist criticism (and its weaker sister, political correctness)
have indeed made *The Taming of the Shrew* a potentially uncomfortable play
in this day and age.  The argument has already been made that the humiliation
Kate experiences is really a kind of psychological violence.  I don't have
any problem with this possibility in interpretation.  I was quite surprised
this summer, however, when a good many of my 3rd year students insisted
(quite vigorously) on reading Kate's "be it moon, or sun, or what you please"
speech (IV.v.) not as an appalling example of mental cruelty, but rather as a
crafty woman responding ritually (and rather "shrew"dly) to a man who has
power over her. In this sense, these students were arguing that the "taming"
is actually being done by Kate and not by Petruchio. She gives him what he
wants to hear (something many students seem to be sympathetic to in their own
classes).  The *possibility* of this "other"  meaning seems to be further
supported in the OED which offers one meaning of "shrew" as "a wicked,
evil-disposed, or malignant *man*" as distinctive from it's female
denotation. I like *both* meanings and I *want* both possibile meanings.
 
All of this brings me also to the recent discussion on play titles and title
pages. On the one hand, *all* of Shakespeare's titles provide us with
important decoding information (generic and otherwise) about the plays.  On
the other hand, the function of titles and title pages seems to be to *open*
possibilities (ambiguities) rather than close or resolve them.
 
Peter Paolucci
York University
Toronto, Ontario
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Fran Teague <
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 >
Date:           Tuesday, 23 Aug 94 09:42:18 EDT
Subject: 5.0691  Re: ACT and Moonlighting *Shrew*s
Comment:        Re: SHK 5.0691  Re: ACT and Moonlighting *Shrew*s
 
The American Conservatory Theatre production of Shrew appeared on PBS as part
of the Theater in America series.  A good copy of that videotape is deposited
in the University of Georgia Library since UGa awards the Peabodys and that
program was nominated.  It's unlikely that the library could copy and send out
such tapes, but the librarian in charge is John Miley, who can be telephoned at
706-542-7360. If someone has seen the videotape of the production at another
site, it may well be legally available through a company that markets PBS
materials.  The production, a commedia delle'arte influenced version, is great
fun; students adore it.  In fact two of my graduate students went to see it,
started laughing, and wound up making such a racket they were nearly thrown
out.
 
(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Larry Soller <
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Date:           Tuesday, 23 Aug 1994 06:45:00 -0700 (MST)
Subject: 5.0691 Re: ACT and Moonlighting *Shrew*s
Comment:        RE: SHK 5.0691 Re: ACT and Moonlighting *Shrew*s
 
I have an average 3/4 inch video of the ACT Shrew. Send me a tape and I will
attempt to have my media area dub it...I assume it is public domain???
 
Best Wishes
Larry Soller
Theatre
Phoenix College
1202 W. Thomas Rd.
Phx. Az. 85012

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[Editor's Note: I would check the legal status before offering to copy.
Personal use allows wide latitude, but distribution is another matter, and
none of us would like SHAKSPER to get into trouble by aiding and abetting --
or whatever legal term applies.  Safely your, Hardy]
 

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