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Home :: Archive :: 1994 :: March ::
Re: Folio-Based Editions; Abridged MND; R3 and
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 5, No. 0294.  Thursday, 31 March 1994.
 
(1)     From:   William Godshalk <GODSHAWL@UCBEH>
        Date:   Wednesday, 30 Mar 1994 22:52:44 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Folio edition
 
(2)     From:   Kurt Daw <
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        Date:   Thursday, 31 Mar 94 08:30:24 EST
        Subj:   Re: Folio editions
 
(3)     From:   David M Richman <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 30 Mar 1994 13:49:51 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 5.0286 Q: Abridged *MND*; Re: Three-Toad Crest
 
(4)     From:   Tom Dale Keever <
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        Date:   Thursday, 31 Mar 94 02:12:11 EST
        Subj:   Re: Richard III and _The Daughter of Time_
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           William Godshalk <GODSHAWL@UCBEH>
Date:           Wednesday, 30 Mar 1994 22:52:44 -0500 (EST)
Subject:        Folio edition
 
Michael:
 
Yes, you remember correctly. I tried to use the Hinman Folio (when it cost
$12.50 a copy) as an undergraduate text. And you remember correctly that the
students quickly returned to their modernized texts with footnotes. So much for
my noble experiment.
 
What I am proposing at present is a modernized student edition with footnotes
and with the text based on the Folio (1623). You might wish to look at Margreta
de Grazia's SHAKESPEARE VERBATIM: THE REPRODUCTION OF AUTHENTICITY AND THE 1790
APPARATUS. It seems to me that a good deal of contemporary scholarship leads
with an insidious intent to a Folio based text with a companion text based on
the Quartos. This project will give Shakespearean scholars a good deal of work
to do As Bernice Kliman has recently pointed out, some (if not many) of our
judgments about the plays are wrong because we are misled by our texts, texts
that have been created by editors over the last three hundred years. Editorial
decisions have become canonized (when they should be cannonized). I admit that
I have been fooled when I have tried to make a subtle point WITHOUT consulting
the Folio and/or the Quarto.
 
But I gather from the relative silence that no such project is waiting in the
wings and that no one (?) is very enthusiastic.
 
Oh, well.
 
Yours, Bill Godshalk
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Kurt Daw <
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 >
Date:           Thursday, 31 Mar 94 08:30:24 EST
Subject:        Re: Folio editions
 
Re: Michael Young's question:  "Could our undergraduates understand a nonedited
text?"
 
As a performance teacher I can only echo Bill G.'s appeal for a good
folio-based edition.  I have frequently taught from modern typeface editions of
folio texts and find that acting students, at least, discover these texts to be
at least as accessible as modern editions.  The simplest explanation I can
offer for this is that the considerably lighter puncuation of the folio is a
far better guide as to how the texts are to be spoken aloud than modern
editions offer.  Speaking the texts aloud well usually leads to quicker and
deeper insights on my student's parts than does extensive discussion.
 
Perhaps my students are odd, but the elaborate footnoting of modern editions is
often more confusing that enlightening to them.  So much minutiae gets a note
while big issues and questions go unexplored.
 
The biggest problem with using folio-based materials as a teaching approach is
that modern typeface folio texts are hard to come by. One source (with which I
have no commercial connection) is a series called Shakespeare's Globe Acting
Editions, M.H. Publications, 17 West Heath Drive, London, NW11 7QG, UK.  At $66
per play these are fairly expnsive but they come with unlimited photocopy
rights for teaching and production.
 
 
(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           David M Richman <
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Date:           Wednesday, 30 Mar 1994 13:49:51 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 5.0286 Q: Abridged *MND*; Re: Three-Toad Crest
Comment:        Re: SHK 5.0286 Q: Abridged *MND*; Re: Three-Toad Crest
 
I am directing a ninety-minute MND, which is touring to high schools and middle
schools in New Hampshire.  Eight performers, two vans.  I made the abridgements
with sadness--it is a desecration to cut so perfect a play. On the other hand,
it is important to bring this play, live, to many who have never seen live
theatre. I can send the script to the Shaksper fileserver, or directly to the
interested parties.  Is there sufficient interest to warrant a fileserver
mounting?
 
David Richman
University of New Hampshire
 
(4)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Tom Dale Keever <
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 >
Date:           Thursday, 31 Mar 94 02:12:11 EST
Subject:        Re: Richard III and _The Daughter of Time_
 
_Daughter of Time_ is an entertaining read, but unreliable history.  Elizabeth
MacKintosh, writing under the pen name "Josephine Tey," based her story on only
one source, Sir Clements R. Markham, who laid out his combative revisionist
theory in _The English Historical Review_ in 1891 and later expanded it for a
book length 1906 bio, _Richard III: His Life and Character_.
 
Markham was an energetic and opinionated crank with no qualifications or
ability as an historian or as much else besides a clubby Victorian/Edwardian
gentleman with independent means, society connections and a full complement of
Colonel Blimpish bigotries.  This lack did not prevent him from weighing in
with strong opinions on numerous erudite topics from medieval history to polar
exploration.  As one of the chief fund-raisers on the committee sponsoring
Scott's South Pole expedition, for instance, he threw his intimidating weight
against the suggestion that the explorer consider using dog sleds and skis. (
No! by thunder! Let lesser races do what they will, ENGLISHMEN will conquer the
pole with stout British ponies! ) Thanks to "Tey's" unearthing his justly
neglected work almost a half century later his pernicious effect on the popular
mythology surrounding Richard has been longer lived, though less tragic, than
his impact on the hapless Scott.
 
"Tey" may have read nothing more than Markham's opening salvo in The EHR -
almost all the points she built her detective's "case" on are there.  She
certainly looked no further than his work for evidence.  Had she done so she'd
have learned that several contemporary experts, including the age's recognized
authority on the period, James Gairdner, had blown large holes in Markham's
theory, whose central point was that Henry VII, not Richard, had murdered the
princes in the tower.  She also ignored two discoveries in the 1930's that sank
it once and for all.
 
The first was the unearthing in Vatican archives of "The Mancini Manuscript,"
an Italian cleric's 1483 communique to the Pope reporting on events in London.
Mancini shreds Markham's fanciful portrait of a London public confident that
the young princes were safe in the care of their loving uncle.  We now know
that the boys disappeared from public view early in Richard's reign and that
more than a few of his subjects suspected the worst.
 
A biography by Philip Lindsay in 1933 revived Markham's indictment of Henry
VII.  In July of that year the bones that had been discovered in The Tower in
1674, long presumed to be those of Edward IV's young sons, were finally
disinterred and examined. The results, published in the journal _Archaeologia_
the following year, concluded that the elder of the two boys was between twelve
and thirteen when he died and the younger between nine and eleven.  The boys
were almost certainly killed before the end of 1483.  Though this does not
prove that Richard ordered them murdered ( personally, I suspect Buckingham )
it does exonerate Henry VII, who entered London two years later.
 
I agree that Saccio is the beginning Shakespearean's best introduction to these
complex matters and that Kendall is good reading, but the definitive modern
works on Richard and his age are Charles Ross' biographies of Richard and of
Edward IV, both published by U. of California Press.  "Tey" fans, and I count
myself one, should read Colin Dexter's recent homage, _The Wench is Dead_, in
which a bed-ridden Inspector Morse unravels a nineteenth century murder mystery
and exposes a long hidden injustice.
 

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