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Home :: Archive :: 1994 :: March ::
Re: Richard III
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 5, No. 0275.  Monday, 28 March 1994.
 
(1)     From:   Bernice W. Kliman <KLIMANB@SNYFARVA.BITNET>
        Date:   Sunday, 27 Mar 1994 08:29 EDT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 5.0270  Qs:  Richard III; Study Leave
 
(2)     From:   Herbert Donow <
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        Date:   Sunday, 27 Mar 94 20:33:26 CST
        Subj:   Richard III
 
(3)     From:   Nicholas Clary <
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        Date:   Monday, 28 Mar 1994 08:32:44 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Richard III
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Bernice W. Kliman <KLIMANB@SNYFARVA.BITNET>
Date:           Sunday, 27 Mar 1994 08:29 EDT
Subject: 5.0270  Qs:  Richard III; Study Leave
Comment:        Re: SHK 5.0270  Qs:  Richard III; Study Leave
 
To Chantal Payette,
 
A wonderful way to begin would be to read Peter Saccio's *Shakespeare's
English Kings: History, Chronicle, and Drama* (Oxford UP, 1977). This
book clarifies what Shakepeare would have known from chronicles, what
historians now believe, and what Shakepeare does. An excellent book.
 
Good luck with the exploration,
Bernice W. Kliman
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Herbert Donow <
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Date:           Sunday, 27 Mar 94 20:33:26 CST
Subject:        Richard III
 
The answer to Chantal Payette's query about Richard III can be found by going
first to Thomas More's Life of Richard, wherein most of the invidious tales of
his character were recorded and preserved. Much of More's account came from
John Morton's account (Morton being an enemy of Richard's and the owner of the
celebrated strawberry patch).  As long as the question of Richard III has come
up in the wash of a recent discussion of Macbeth, I am prompted to deliver an
observation about Richard and Macbeth. The two characters are of course quite
similar in their boundless ambition, etc. etc., but Richard is a more
successful character (and villain) because he has a sense of humor. I have
always found the play Macbeth a disappointment because Macbeth was humorless,
and there was no one there to provide the humor for us. I would far rather have
my throat cut by a Richard, an Aaron, a Iago (or a Hamlet)--who could give the
audience a chuckle while doing it--than by a humorless Macbeth. And with that
I'll lug my guts to bed.
 
     Herb Donow  Southern Illinois University (soon to be emeritus--hurrah)
 
(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Nicholas Clary <
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Date:           Monday, 28 Mar 1994 08:32:44 -0500 (EST)
Subject:        Richard III
 
As a WALL STREET JOURNAL columnist notes: "The catalyst for many
Ricardian conversions is A DAUGHTER OF TIME, a 1951 murder mystery novel by
the late Josephine Tey.  The book tells of a modern detective investigating
the case against Richard and concluding that it was a frame-up by the Tudors,
specifically, Henry VII, who succeeded Richard to the throne."  While the
novel does, as Bisceglia notes, inspire "a stirring of latent,
anti-intellectual leanings, as if to confirm an earlier conviction," many
Ricardian converts embrace its conclusions with enthusiasm.  This new-popularist
text is complemented by annual notices in local newspapers placed by the
Richard III Society (chapters can be found in the U.S. as well as abroad) on
the anniversary of Richard's death (August 22).  See WSJ, for 13 March 1991 (I
have the clip but not the full bibliographical data).
 
I submit this posting as a supplement to the excellent recommendations that
others have already made.  By the way, a colleague of mine informed me that
Tey's novel was required reading for his graduate course in bibliography and
research at Wisconsin.  It was not treated as a negative instance.
 
Nick Clary
 

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