1994

Authorship

Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 5, No. 0882.  Thursday, 3 November 1994.
 
(1)     From:   Todd M. Lidh <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 1 Nov 1994 10:47:53 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 5.0875 Authorship
 
(2)     From:   David Joseph Kathman <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 1 Nov 94 22:37:46 CST
        Subj:   Authorship
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Todd M. Lidh <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 1 Nov 1994 10:47:53 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 5.0875 Authorship
Comment:        Re: SHK 5.0875 Authorship
 
I will willingly acknowledge my own sparse background in the field of
authorship, but, as an up-and-coming (would-be) Shakesperian scholar, I feel I
have to express my own feelings in this area.
 
All of the evidence I have seen and heard which supports Oxford (or others) has
been substantially insubstantial.  No direct evidence exists which points to
the Earl, nor will there be any.  Conjectures based on supposition based on
wishful thinking has led to a pretty argument but one which lacks any force of
proof.
 
Shakespearians, on the other hand, have direct evidence.  Pat Buckridge
acknowledges that their is a will of William Shakespeare of Stratford which
links him with the William Shakespere of London.  Hey, that sounds like
evidence to me!  Why do supporters of Oxford claim that Shakesperians must
provide a wealth of direct evidence when they themselves can produce none at
all?
 
Also, one cannot dismiss title pages and such because they are (gasp!) direct
evidence also -- tangible, extant evidence which states that William
Shakespeare wrote these plays.
 
Where is the evidence of an Elizabethan conspiracy?  Where is the evidence of
Oxford's sudden maturing as a writer?  Where is the evidence?
 
Plainly, there is none.  And, until there is, I believe that any burden of
proof (which must contain direct evidence) is on the shoulders of the
Oxfordians.  Personally, I study these plays without much thought as to who
wrote them, but I also cannot dismiss the author from some of my assumptions.
I have no room for Oxford in this analysis because I have no good, logical
reason nor proof to accept (or even consider) him the author.
 
Please, citing direct evidence, change my mind.
 
Todd M. Lidh
UNC-Chapel Hill
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           David Joseph Kathman <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 1 Nov 94 22:37:46 CST
Subject:        Authorship
 
Arrgh.  I see that David Evett's posting, reasonable as it was, has unleashed
the expected responses from Oxfordians.  Let me first respond to Pat Buckridge,
then to Charles Boyle.
 
1) Phlogiston, Pat?  Come on.  If you want to play that game, I could compare
Oxfordians to other historical revisionist movements whose members have much
more sinister motivations than you do.  "But I won't, since that would be
stupid and unfair to you.  Let's just stick to the subject at hand."
 
2) As for more substantive claims: Pat implies that the occasional hyphenation
of Shakespeare's name on the title pages of the quartos is grounds for
believing that this was a pseudonym.  This common Oxfordian belief (usually
just asserted with no evidence whatsoever) bears no relation to reality, and
Irvin Matus in *Shakespeare, In Fact* shows it to be the baseless distortion it
is.  There are plenty of other instances where non-pseudonymous proper names
were hyphenated in Elizabethan times, and the pattern seems to be that if a
name can be divided into two parts, one or both of which is an English word,
the name was occasionally hyphenated in print --- e.g. Shake-speare,
Old-castle, etc.  IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH PSEUDONYMS, and anyone who says
that hyphenation commonly indicated a pseudonym in Elizabethan times is simply
making a false statement.
 
3) Pat claims that there are 'remarkably few' contemporary allusions to
Shakespeare, when there are about as many as we should expect for a playwright
of his stature.  There are fewer contemporary allusions to Thomas Dekker and
John Webster among others, and they wrote plays longer than Shakespeare did.
He also claims that these allusions are inconclusive in that they do not
specify "William Shakespeare the glover's son from Stratford-upon-Avon"; aside
from the fact that some of these allusions imply that Shakespeare was an actor,
this criterion would invalidate probably 99 percent of Elizabethan allusions.
 
4) The claim that the only evidence directly linking Shakespeare of Stratford
with the actor/sharer of London is the bequest to Heminges, Condell, and
Burbage in Shakespeare's will is not quite accurate --- there's also the
document in the College of Heralds with a drawing of Shakespeare's coat of arms
and the disparaging notation "Shakspere, the player".  This is the same coat of
arms which appears on Shakespeare's grave and monument in Stratford --- oh, I
forgot, those were erected by the conspirators after Shakespeare's death to
fool posterity.  There are also, of course, numerous other documents (Augustine
Phillips' will, the Royal patent for the King's Men, etc. etc.) indicating that
a real person named William Shakespeare (virtually always with that spelling in
the documents in question) was an actor and sharer in the Chamberlain's /
King's Men.  What, are you suggesting that this was a different man than the
guy who left rings to Heminges and Condell in his will?  If so, who was it?
 
5) Now on to Charles Boyle.  Mr. Boyle uses Ward Elliot's refreshing modesty
("ours is not the last word on the subject, much less the only word") as an
excuse to dismiss Elliot's entire study.  What, because Ward Elliot refuses to
proclaim his study the be-all and end-all of stylometric authorship studies,
that means we can just toss it out without a second glance?  Please.  Why don't
you try telling us specifically what's wrong with Elliot's study, rather than
proclaiming it "flawed" and acting like that's the end of the discussion?
 
6) Boyle also, like Pat Buckridge, disparages the amount of evidence linking
the Stratford man to the plays.  I'll say it one more time:  the parallel
evidence for other Elizabethan playwrights is just as tenuous by 20th century
standards, in most cases more tenuous.  Take Christopher Marlowe.  We know that
there was a real person with this name, a shoemaker's son from Canterbury, but
if you want to have some fun on a rainy Sunday afternoon, try proving that this
person ever wrote a play in his life. You can't do it, using Oxfordian
standards.  Consider: we have no letters or other documents in his hand, just a
single signature as a witness to a will in 1583, spelled "Christofer Marley"
(we're pretty sure this is the right guy because his father was a witness to
the same will).  During his lifetime, the only play we now attribute to him
which was published was *Tamburlaine Part 2*, published anonymously in 1590,
and the grounds for attributing this play to Marlowe in any case are very
meager, consisting mainly of a highly ambiguous reference by Robert Greene.
Marlowe's name was *never* directly associated with any plays during his
lifetime; this first happened in 1594, the year after his death, when the name
"Christopher Marlowe" (a spelling almost never used while the shoemaker's son
was alive) appeared on the title page of *Dido, Queen of Carthage*.  During the
rest of the decade some plays appeared with "Ch. Mar." or "C. Marl." or the
like; it wasn't until well into the 17th century that the name "Christopher
Marlowe" was regularly associated in print with plays.  And in any case,
references made after the man's death don't count, as the Oxfordians always
tell us in the case of Shakespeare.  The literary allusions to Marlowe are of
the same type as the allusions to Shakespeare, and could easily be dismissed on
the same grounds the Oxfordians use.  Yet despite all this --- the fact that he
spelled his name "Marley" while the quartos after his death say "Marlowe", the
fact that nothing during his lifetime directly links him to any play, and the
posthumous evidence is almost nonexistent until a decade or more after his
death --- despite all this, people seem to have no trouble believing that
Christopher Marlowe of Caterbury wrote *The Jew of Malta*, *Dr. Faustus*,
*Tamburlaine*, and *Edward II*, and there are people who believe that he also
wrote Shakespeare's plays as well.  Anyone who accepts that Christopher Marlowe
of Canterbury wrote plays but refuses to accept that William Shakespeare of
Stratford did is applying a double standard of the most blatant and monumental
order.
 
Good night.
 
Dave Kathman
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Questions from High School Students

Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 5, No. 0881.  Thursday, 3 November 1994.
 
From:           Shirley Phillips <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Monday, 31 Oct 94 11:23:42 PST
Subject:        Questions for SHAKSPER
 
[Editor's Note: Shirley Phillips's high school students have been taking
advantage to the resources of the Internet to work on their Shakespeare
projects.  I have agreed to post questions that some have with the
understanding that answers should be sent directly to Shirley Phillips at
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  So if you would care to help out, here are the
questions.  --HMC]
 
A high school student would like experts' thoughts on the question, "Was
Shakespeare a genius or opportunist?"  Could Shakespearan researchers and/or
instructors give opinions?
 
A student is researching the "authenticity of Shakespeare's authorship" with
very few sources found.  Could some experts give opinions on this topic.
 
Thank you very much.
 
Shirley Phillips
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (Shirley Phillips)

McMaster Conference

Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 5, No. 0879.  Tuesday, 1 November 1994.
 
From:           Helen Ostovich <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Monday, 31 Oct 1994 14:52:45 +0001 (EST)
Subject:        McMaster Conference
 
                                                        November 18, 1994
 
                      EXPANDING THE CANON:
          NEW DIMENSIONS IN ENGLISH RENAISSANCE STUDIES
 
 
8:OO am             REGISTRATION -- Gilmour Hall Council Chamber
 
PLENARY SESSION 1                                 9:00-10:30
                                   Gilmour Hall Council Chamber
 
                    Expanding the Canon:  Theory and Practice
 
                    MODERATOR:  Helen Ostovich (McMaster)
                    KEYNOTE SPEAKER:  Jean E Howard (Columbia):
                         "Other Englands:  The View from the Non-
                         Shakespearean History Play"
                    RESPONDENT:  Paul Stevens (Queen's)
 
COFFEE                                            10:30-11:00
 
PLENARY SESSION 2                                 11:00-12:30
                                   Gilmour Hall Council Chamber
 
                    Reading Dialogue and Performance
 
                    MODERATOR:  Graham Roebuck (McMaster)
                    Judith Deitch (U of Toronto):  ""`Dialogue-
                         wise':  Rediscovering English Dialogues
                         1560-1603"
                    Leslie S. Katz (Amherst):  "`Sweete Sir
                         Timothie, kind sir Timothie, tough sir
                         Timothie':  Voicing Robert Armin's Quips
                         upon Questions"
                    Stephanie Wright:  "A Text without a Space:
                         Performing The Tragedy of Miriam"
 
 
LUNCH                                                  12:30-2:00
                              Commons Building, Small Dining Room
 
 
 
CONCURRENT SESSIONS 3 AND 4                            2:00-3:30
 
(3)                                Gilmour Hall Council Chamber
 
                    Show and Tell:  Spectacle as Meaning
 
                    MODERATOR:  Mary Silcox (McMaster)
                    John Astington (U of Toronto):  "The Ages of
                         Man and the Lord Mayor's Show"
                    Candy Loren (U of Toronto):  "`To enter Gods
                         house, as if it were a Play-house':  The
                         Jacobean `Man-Woman' Transgressively
                         Reinscribed in the Role of Spectator"
                    Philip Collington (U of Toronto):
                         "Middleton, Whitney and Wither:
                         Stagecraft `in the Light of the Emblem'"
 
(4)                                          University Hall 122
 
                    The Bible and Meditative Tradition
 
                    MODERATOR:  James Dale (McMaster)
                    Noam Flinker (U of Haifa):  "Biblical Poetry
                         in the Context of Mid-Sixteenth-Century
                         Political Tension:  The Case of William
                         Baldwin's The Canticles, or Balades of
                         Salomon"
                    Kel Morin (U of Ottawa):  "`Thus crave I
                         mercy':  The Preface of Anne Locke"
                    John Ottenhoff (Alma College, MI):
                         "Meditating upon Anne Locke's
                         Meditations"
 
 
COFFEE                                                 3:30-4:00
 
 
CONCURRENT SESSIONS 5 AND 6                            4:00-5:30
 
(5)                                Gilmour Hall Council Chamber
 
                    Women's Ordeals
 
                    MODERATOR:  Joan Coldwell (McMaster)
                    Stanley D. McKenzie (Rochester Institute of
                         Technology):  "`I to my selfe am
                         strange':  The Competing Voices of
                         Drayton's `Mistress Shore'"
                    Karen Bamford (Mount Allison):  "Sexual
                         Violence in the Queen of Corinth"
                    Anthony Martin (Waseda University, Tokyo):
                         "The `Voice' of an African Woman:
                         George Herbert's `Aethiopissa'"
 
(6)                                          University Hall 122
 
                    Reading and Writing Kings
 
                    MODERATOR:  Tom Cain (McMaster)
                    Joan Parks (U of Wisconsin):  "Elizabeth
                         Cary's Domestic History"
                    Louise Nichols (U du Quebec a Chicoutimi):
                         "`My name was known before I came':  The
                         Heroic Identity of the Prince in The
                         Famous Victories of Henry V"
                    Sandra Bell (Queens):  "The King Writing:
                         King James VI and Lepanto"
 
CASH BAR                                          5:30-7:00
                    Commons Building, Dining Room
DINNER                                                 7:00
 
 
REGISTRATION --  EXPANDING THE CANON
 
A conference for the rediscovery and exploration of neglected areas of English
writings, 1560-1625, such as non-Shakespearean drama, particularly lesser known
works; poets other than Shakespeare, Sidney, Spenser, Donne; letters and
diaries; travel literature; popular culture; woemn's writings; emblem books;
masques; prose fiction.
 
Keynote Speaker:  Jean Howard (Columbia University)
               "Other Englands:  The View from the Non-
               Shakespearean History Play"
 
Respondent:  Paul Stevens (Queen's University)
 
Sponsored by the McMaster University English Association
 
 
                         THE CONFERENCE
 
8:00 am        REGISTRATION  The Council Chamber, Gilmour Hall
               Coffee & tea served
9:00 am        KEYNOTE ADDRESS
               Response
10:30 am       Coffee Break
11:00 am       PANEL OF SPEAKERS
12:30 pm       LUNCHEON (included in registration fee)
2:00 pm        PANEL OF SPEAKERS
3:30 pm        Coffee Break
4:00 pm        PANEL OF SPEAKERS
5:30 pm        Cash Bar
7:00 pm        Dinner -- Buffet of 4 salads, 2 entrees (Chicken
               with wild mushrooms; Striploin of Beef au jus);
               potatoes and vegetables; choice of desserts; wine;
               tea & coffee.  OPTIONAL:  COST $28.00.  PLEASE
               RESERVE WITH REGISTRATION FORM.
 
CONFERENCE HOTEL:  Visitors Inn, 649 Main St W, Hamilton ON L8S 1A2 --
(905)529-6979.  Please contact hotel directly and request conference rate:  $63
single; $68 double (+ tax).  Early reservations advised.
 
PARKING:  Conference parking spaces available.  Sterling St. entrance to
campus.
 
The full programme with names of all speakers and titles of papers will be
available after Oct 15. More information from Mary Silcox (905) 525-9140 x27314
and Helen Ostovich x24496, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
 
 
                        REGISTRATION FORM
 
NAME:____________________________________________________________
 
ADDRESS:_________________________________________________________
 
_________________________________________________________________
 
TELEPHONE:  Business___________________      Home:_______________
 
Registration fee (Canadian funds):  Regular = $20
                                    student = $10
                                    dinner  = $28
                                   ___________________
TOTAL
 
Current exchange rate of US $ is approximately $1 US: $1.40 Cdn. Please return
this form and cheque (made out to McMaster University in Canadian funds) to the
address following by FRIDAY NOVEMBER 4:
 
Mrs Clover Nixon
Department of English
McMaster University
Hamilton, Ontario
Canada L8S 4L9

CFP: Computers and Texts #8

Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 5, No. 0880.  Tuesday, 1 November 1994.
 
From:           Stuart Lee <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 01 Nov 1994 11:14:54 +0000
Subject:        CFP: Computers and Texts 8
 
******************************************************************************
                     Please cross-post accordingly.
 
Computers & Texts # 8
 
CALL FOR PAPERS
 
Newsletter of the CTI Centre for Textual Studies
 
Computers & Texts has now been running for three years and is the newsletter of
the Computers in Teaching Initiative Centre for Textual Studies, based at
Oxford University Computing Services. The subjects covered by the Centre
include literature, linguistics, classics, theology, philosophy (& logic),
theatre arts, and media studies. The newsletter has a selection of short
articles relating to computer-aided learning in textual studies, a section
devoted to the Office for Humanities Communication, and has a mailing of over
2,000 world-wide. Articles relating to projects dealing with electronic text
centres and editions are particularly welcome.
 
Format: Submissions should be of approximately 1000-1500 words although this is
open to discussion with the editors. Footnotes should be limited and placed at
the end of the article. References to published works should be of the form
(Smith, 1992) with full bibliographic details given at the end of the article.
Screen dumps are accepted, preferably in TIFF or PICT format for the Macintosh.
 
Deadline: 25 November, 1994
 
Send all details to:
 
Lorna Hughes or Mike Popham
Research Officers
CTI Centre for Textual Studies
Oxford University Computing Services
13 Banbury Road
Oxford
OX2 6NN
Tel:0865-273221
Fax:0865-273221
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The British Library

Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 5, No. 0878.  Tuesday, 1 November 1994.
 
From:           William Proctor Williams <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Monday, 31 Oct 94 18:37 CST
Subject:        British Library
 
I am posting the following message from the British Library Regular Readers'
Group (RRG) to several lists since the information it contains may be of
general interest (apologies for the duplication in advance); mentions of the
library's problems have been turning up in various academic/scholarly
newsletters and journals such as the +East-Central Intelligencer+ and the
newsletter of the Johnson Society of the Central Region. For those who have not
been following the saga but are interested, this is a brief (and obviously
over-simplified) outline: the grand original 1978 plan has been so cut that
despite the unfortunate, disaster-prone new library's cost (450 million pounds
so far), its storage will be full when it opens, whenever that may be, and
there will be only 73 more seats for readers--a high price to pay for the loss
of the Round Reading Room and the King's Library. What follows is a digest of
the material contained in the October 1994 +Newsletter+ of the RRG.
 
----------------------------------------------------
The British Library's new St. Pancras building is perhaps even further from
completion: various essential elements of the building are either defective,
already out of date, or subject to disputes between the contractors and the
Department of National Heritage.  There remains NO PROJECTED OPENING DATE.
 
The RRG has published a revised edition of its report: +The Great British
Library Disaster+ (copies can be obtained either by sending 5.00 pounds to the
RRG or by sending $5.00 to me for a photocopy of the report--addresses at the
end of this posting).
 
On 30 June the Commons Select Committee for National Heritage held a hearing
and called witnesses (among these were the RRG, Brian Lang and Sir Anthony
Kenny of the British Library, and Peter Brooke, then Secretary of State for
National Heritage).  In the end the Select Committee called for: the retention
of the Round Reading Room as an integral part of the British Library "in
perpetuity"; an inquiry, chaired by an Ombudsman, to investigate what has gone
wrong at St. Pancras; the retention of the rest of the St. Pancras site for use
by the British Library in the future.
 
The RRG has been consulted by the National Audit Office about the framework for
their own enquiries.  The RRG has also attempted to meet with the new Secretary
of State for National Heritage, Stephen Dorrell, but has been turned down.  The
RRG has had talks with Labour MP Mo Mowlam (Shadow spokesman on National
Heritage) and Robert McClennan (President of the Liberal Democrats).
 
The month of November will be crucial.  Gerald Kaufman, MP (Chairman of the
Select Committee) has made it clear he plans to pursue the matters; the
government, through the Department of Heritage, must make a response to the
Select Committee's recommendations by the end of the month. The RRG urges that
you write to Stephen Dorrell as soon as possible, no matter where you live (The
Rt. Hon. Stephen Dorrell, Secretary of State for National Heritage, 2-4
Cockspur Street, London SW1Y 5DH).  If you live in the UK, the RRG urges you
also to write to your MP.
 
Finally, the RRG is very short of funds and all donations will be gratefully
received.  Cheques drawn on sterling accounts or other foreign accounts should
be made payable to The Regular Readers' Group and sent to the London address.
Checks drawn on US dollar accounts should be made payable to W. P. Williams,
with the Memo line indicating RRG, and sent to the DeKalb, IL address.
 
---------------------------------------------------
That is the end of the digest.  If you have further questions or want further
information, please do not hesitate to contact me by e-mail, snail mail, or
telephone.
 
In London RRG officers are: Etrenne Lymbery, Chairman, and Brian Lake,
Secretary.  46 Great Russell Street, London WC1B 3PA; Telephone 071 631 4220;
Fax 071 436 6544. In North America: William Proctor Williams, President for
North America.  Department of English, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL
60115; Telephone (815)753-6608; Fax (815)753-0606; e- mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
 
Thanks for your patience with this long posting and WRITE STEPHEN DORRELL SOON!

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