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Home :: Archive :: 1994 :: July ::
Q: Grouping Shakespeare's Plays
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 5, No. 0631.  Saturday, 23 July 1994.
 
From:           John E. Perry" <JPERRY@CEBAFVAX.BITNET>
Date:           Friday, 22 Jul 1994 21:40:34 -0400 (EDT)
Subject:        May we start another discussion?
 
Eavesdropping on the Godshalk, Buckridge, Drakakis melee is fascinating and
educational for me, but, while I'd like to see it continue to some sort of
conclusion or even agreement, I'd also like to see something else.
 
So, while GBD wallow in their deliberations, I'd like to ask a naive, hopefully
not silly question. (Be assured that I'll continue to read and learn from their
messages -- but I have other interests, too.)
 
I just rented Branagh's _Much Ado About Nothing_, and it took its place just
behind _Taming of the Shrew_ as my favorite comedy for the same reason that _T
of S_ is my favorite. Specifically, I naively classify some of Shakespeare's
plays into plot groups (in order of my preference).
 
        Brilliant girl and boy meet, trade barbs until they find they
        are worthy of one another, and hook one another:
        --Taming of the Shrew, Much Ado About Nothing
 
        Brilliant girl meets marginally worthy boy, saves him from some
        awful fate, hooks him.
        --Merchant of Venice, (there's another, but I can't remember!)
 
        Several people play around for a while, we all have lots of fun.
        --Midsummer Night's Dream, Merry Wives of Windsor
 
Lest I become tedious, I'll quit here. Are there other plays in the first and
second groups? Are there other identifiable groups?
 
Feel free to ridicule my naivete: I freely admit I'm both uneducated in most of
the Shakespeare plays, and naive in matters dramatic. I'll profit from whatever
comes my way.
 
        john perry
        
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