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Home :: Archive :: 1995 :: January ::
*MV* and Anti-Semiticism (w/ DATABASE Instructions)
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 6, No. 0006.  Thursday, 5 January, 1995.
 
(1)     From:   Aaron Tornberg <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 4 Jan 1995 11:38:26 -0500
        Subj:   Re: Merchant of Venice
 
(2)     From:   Hardy M. Cook <
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        Date:   Thursday, January 5, 1994
        Subj:   Past Discussions of Anti-Semiticism
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Aaron Tornberg <
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Date:           Wednesday, 4 Jan 1995 11:38:26 -0500
Subject:        Re: Merchant of Venice
 
I am a student in a Shakespeare course at York University and have been having
discussions with a variety of people about my problems with "The Merchant of
Venice."
 
I have heard many defenses of Shakespeare's seemingly anti-Semitic portrayal of
Shylock.  In relation to "The Jew of Malta" Shakespeare seems tame, but I have
trouble dismissing the fact that Shylock's daughter shuns her father too easily
and the fact the obviously harassing Christians win in the end.
 
Should we simply forgive Shakespeare because he was writing at a time when it
was popular to hate Jews and hated them less than Marlowe?
 
Should we further forgive Shakespeare's misquotation through Shylock of the
story of Uncle Laban's sheep?  Jacob cheated Laban only AFTER Jacob was himself
cheated BY Laban.  Shakespeare fails to mention this fact within the play.
 
Shakespeare's portrayal of Shylock seems inaccurate.
 
Aaron Tornberg,  York University,  Toronto, Ontario, Canada

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(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Hardy M. Cook <
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Date:           Thursday, January 5, 1994
Subject:        Past Discussions of Anti-Semiticism
 
Dear Aaron Tornberg:
 
Anti-semiticism in Shakespeare in general and Shylock and *The Merchant of
Venice* in particular has been discussed in great length on SHAKSPER in the
past.  To locate and retreive those discussions, I suggest that you try the
DATABASE function.
 
First, send an e-mail message like the following to the LISTSERV address,
LISTSERV@UTORONTO.BITNET:
 
//
Database Search DD=Rules
//Rules DD  *
Search anti-semitic OR antisemiticism in SHAKSPER
Index
/*
 
You may use other Boolean operators too.
 
You will then get back two things: an e-mail message that tells how the job
went and the output file called DATABASE OUTPUT. You'll see how many hits there
were in a list, a sort of index.
 
Select those digests that interest you from the DATABASE OUTPUT and then send
 
//
Database Search DD=Rules
//Rules DD  *
Search anti-semitic OR anti-semiticism in SHAKSPER
Print all of [Item numbers]
/*
 
In [Item numbers] include the numbers from the DATABASE OUTPUT file or order
all (warning this will be a very large file) by having the line read:
 
Print all
 
If you wish, you can limit your search by dates:
 
//
Database Search DD=Rules
//Rules DD
Search anti-semitic OR antisemiticism from 93/1/1 to 93/12/31 in SHAKSPER
Index
/*
 
OR
 
//
Database Search DD=Rules
//Rules DD
Search anti-semitic OR anti-semiticism since 94/1/1 in SHAKSPER
Index
/*
 
Happy hunting!
 

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