1995

Re: *Lr.* Ending; Staging *Rom.*; Teaching/Performance

Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 6, No. 0309.  Monday, 17 April 1995.
 
(1)     From:   Peter J. Callahan <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 18:01:31 -0400 (EDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0299  Re: The Ending of *King Lear*
 
(2)     From:   Milla Riggio <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 18:10:39 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   [Staging *Rom.*]
 
(3)     From:   Frances Helphinstine <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Monday, 17 Apr 95 7:23:26 EDT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0302  Q: Stratford Festival and Teaching
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Peter J. Callahan <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 18:01:31 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: 6.0299  Re: The Ending of *King Lear*
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0299  Re: The Ending of *King Lear*
 
I was at a lecture at the Folger Library in D.C. last year,  I believe that the
lecturer said that in the end of the 18th or 19th Century that the ending of
*King Lear* was so depressing that most theaters performed the ending as a
comedy.  This practice has stopped in this century, (thank God).  Has anyone
else heard this, or do I have the wrong production in mind?
 
Peter J. Callahan
SH377413@scvax
Shepherd College
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Milla Riggio <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 18:10:39 -0500 (EST)
Subject:        [Staging *Rom.*]
 
Thanks to those who have written with suggestions about Romeo and Juliet. I
have a clarification and another question:  the clarification is that I'm not
looking for information on productions, but the best sources possible on the
play, scholarly, cultural, the whole schmear.  And, another question:  what
text would you recommend if you were staging the play.  Roger Gross and others
who have staged it, what text did you use?
 
Thanks once more.  Again, private responses are probably most appropriate.
 
Milla Riggio -
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
 
(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Frances Helphinstine <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Monday, 17 Apr 95 7:23:26 EDT
Subject: 6.0302  Q: Stratford Festival and Teaching
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0302  Q: Stratford Festival and Teaching
 
A Wonderful Resource is Professor Ken Davis right there at IUPUI.  He wrote
REHEARSING THE AUDIENCE:  WAYS TO DEVELOP STUDENT PERCEPTIONS OF THEATRE.
(NCTE, L988).  His home address is 7856 N. Clarendon Road, Indianapolis, IN
46260-3513.
 
Fran H.
Morehead State

Qs: Fighting Words; Oral Stage Tradition

Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 6, No. 0308.  Monday, 17 April 1995.
 
(1)     From:   Daniel L. Colvin <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 14:46:00 -0500 (CDT)
        Subj:   Fighting words
 
(2)     From:   Ken Colston <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Sunday, 16 Apr 1995 18:46:17 -0400
        Subj:   Oral Stage Tradition
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Daniel L. Colvin <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 14:46:00 -0500 (CDT)
Subject:        Fighting words
 
The fight director for our production of Macbeth has asked me to come up with
some "ad libs" for characters to say at various parts of the play, especially
big fights.  I could use help from SHAKSPEReans in two ways:
 
1.      If you have any wonderful words/phrases/insults/etc. to suggest,
        please let me know.
 
2.      I seem to recall seeing an advertisement for a book (I think
        published by a British press) which dealt with Shakespearean
        curses and similar matters -- a kind of collection from the
        plays.  Do any of you know of such a book?
 
Thanks for any help you can give.
 
Dan Colvin
Western Illinois University
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Ken Colston <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Sunday, 16 Apr 1995 18:46:17 -0400
Subject:        Oral Stage Tradition
 
Does an oral stagecraft tradition for any of Shakespeare's plays (passed on
from generation to generation of theater types) exist that might reach back to
his time and thus shed light on original/early interpretation?  Or have there
been too many interruptions lasting several generations?  Is there any
scholarship in this area?  For example, I understand that by tradition Act I
Scene ii of Henry IV, Part 1 is set in an Eastcheap apartment belonging to
Prince Hal.  Nothing in the text confirms this.  Where would such a tradition
originate?  This is only one simple example from a play I'm reading with a
high-school class.  I'd be interested to hear what SHAKSPERians know about the
oral tradition.

Re: *Macbeth*: Prophecy & Middleton

Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 6, No. 0306.  Monday, 17 April 1995.
 
(1)     From:   Eddie Duggan <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Saturday, 15 Apr 95 19:02:25 BST
        Subj:   Parentage & Prophecy in _Macbeth_
 
(2)     From:   Gabriel Egan <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 20:55:38 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0303  More *Mac.* Responses
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Eddie Duggan <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Saturday, 15 Apr 95 19:02:25 BST
Subject:        Parentage & Prophecy in _Macbeth_
 
Parentage and Prophecy in Macbeth
 
I'm currently working on a paper with the above title. It was this which
prompted me to mail some ideas on the subject to the list.  I've had some
response and would like to take the opportunity to answer the replies publicly,
via the list, rather than email, in the hope of stimulating some further
debate.
 
J. R. Nelson writes in a email reply [have you cc'd this to the list, JR?]:
 
>I agree that all prophesy in Macbeth must come true, but I disagree
>that Malcolm is Banquo's father.  Try this idea.
>
>I am not an English historian so I don't know the ancestry
>of the British throne, but I have assumed that there must be some
>relationship between Banquo and King James.  It appears that there
>are several scenes written in the play specifically to compliment the
>king (healing scrofula--earth itself mourning death of Duncan etc).
>This may be another compliment.
> [...]
>I maintain Banquo somehow is father to the line of kings coming out
>of the caldron.
 
You are quite right, albeit in the conventional sense. The reading I propose,
however, is one that eschews the conventional for what we might descibe as one
in which 'nothing is / But what is not'.
 
In a similarly conventional vein is Scott Shepherd.
 
In reply to:
 
>> "...the father of Malcolm must be Banquo."
 
Scott writes:
 
>No way. The Banquo prophecy comes true not in the play but in
>Scottish history.
>Descendants of Fleance take the throne a few generations later.
>One such descendant is King James I, king also of England and of
>Shakespeare, who had James and his pleasure in mind (we presume)
>when he wrote about the Scottish monarchy.
>
>Probably Shakespeare's audience knew about these things, and recognized
>the Banquo procession in scene 4.1 as a parade of their king's ancestors.
 
I would answer Scott in two ways:
 
First, the play isn't able to read history, Scots or otherwise. The logic of
the play and the prophecies is contained within its narrative time (ie all the
prophecies, to maintain narrative coherence, must be contained within the time
of the telling).
 
Further, to agree with the 'unexpected' aspect of the other prophecies, there
can be no explanation other than the one I propose: at the end of the play the
crown falls to Malcolm; ergal, for the condition <:all prophecies are fulfilled
within the time span of the play:> to be true, Banquo MUST be the father of
Malcolm.
 
Second, Scots history--the combination of legend (viz. Hector Boece's _Scotorum
Historiae_ which provided the source for Ralph Holinshed's _Chronicles_ in
which Shakespeare found the material for _Macbeth_) and history, combined with
Shakespeare's flattery for his patron--which amounts to what was 'known' by
James, Shakespeare and the seventeenth-century audience, that James was
descended from Banquo, has been subsequently revised.
 
It is now accepted, I believe, that the 'historical' Banquo was not the
ancestor of James. [In fact Siward is more closely related to James than
Banquo.]  It is also accepted that Fleance has no historical equivalent and was
merely taken from Holinshed by Shakespeare, even though he is 'forgotten' after
_Macbeth_ 3.3.
 
So, to Scott's assertion that 'The Banquo prophecy comes true not in the play
but in Scottish history', I must reply that it is in fact the case that Banquo
and Fleance play no part in Scottish history.
 
Rather, the historical line of descent is as follows:
 
                        Duncan I
                        (d. 1040)
                            |
                            | [Macbeth (ca 1005-1057):
                            | rules 1040-1057
                            | (d. 1057, slain by Malcolm)]
                            |
                        Malcolm III (Canmore)
                        (d. 1093) Son of Duncan I
                        rules 1057-1093.
                            |
                            | Donald Ban, Malcolm's
                            | brother, uncle to Duncan II,
                            | usurps crown, 1093.
                            |
                        Duncan II
                        (d. 1094) Eldest son of Malcolm
                        Canmore, by his first wife.
                            |
                            | Donald Ban restored 1095.
                            |
                         Edgar, son of Malcolm by his second
                         wife, installed on Scots throne by
                         William Rufus, 1097.
                            |
                            |
                         Alexander I, son of Malcolm by his
                         second wife.
                            |
                            |
                          David I   [= Matilda (Siward's daughter)]
                          son of Malcolm Canmore (ruled 1124-1153).
                            |
                          [... some 400 years]
                            |
                          James Stuart (1567, VI of Scotland)
                                   (and 1603, I of England)
 
[And as to the suggestion that Shakespeare 'had James and his pleasure in
mind', I think that may be dealt with more adequately in the discussion of the
Sonnets ;) ]
 
Eddie Duggan
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Gabriel Egan <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 20:55:38 +0100
Subject: 6.0303  More *Mac.* Responses
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0303  More *Mac.* Responses
 
_Macbeth_ will, I understand, be included in the Oxford Complete Works of
Thomas Middleton. The Oxford Complete Shakespeare Electronic edition gives the
following to Middleton: 1.2, 1.3.37-45 (maybe - uncertain authorship), 3.5,
4.1.38-60, 4.1.141-148.
 
Gabriel Egan

Re: Ideology and Subjectivity

Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 6, No. 0307.  Monday, 17 April 1995.
 
(1)     From:   Gabriel Egan <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 19:04:54 +0100
        Subj:   Re: Literature and Ideology (Was Early Modern Subjectivity)
 
(2)     From:   W. L. Godshalk <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 22:09:19 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0304  Re: Early Modern Subjectivity
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Gabriel Egan <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 19:04:54 +0100
Subject:        Re: Literature and Ideology (Was Early Modern Subjectivity)
 
I am very pleased to see that the name of this thread has changed. Terry Hawkes
mentioned, and no-one followed up, the fact that we are being jerked around by
the term 'early modern'. The term suggests that something happened in the late
medieval period that changed everything, including subjectivity. The big change
I see is the emergence of proto-capitalism in the accumulation of wealth in the
wool trade in Britain in the fourteenth-century. As a Marxist I call this
change in subjectivity that we perceive a superstructural corrolary of the
change in the economic structure. Note my 'that we perceive'. I am much less
certain that there WAS a change in subjectivity than I am certain that we
perceive it because we live towards the end (I hope!) of the same capitalist
era.
 
I spot a contradiction in Bill Godshalk's last posting:
 
> That very conservative book [The Bell Curve] claims, as Gabriel Egan
claims,  that the "races" (read "cultures" if you will) are different.
 
Okay, I'll read 'cultures', what then?...
 
> The English have always known that other cultures were (and are)
> different. The English knew that Indian cultures were different when they
> established the Raj.
 
So you, me, and the authors of the Bell Curve agree on cultural difference,
Bill? I am glad, but from what you tell me of the authors of that book
("very conservative") I think we three shall ne'er meet again.
 
I don't generally take 'race' and 'culture' as synomymous. I am not so
scared of the uses other people have made of difference that I have to
pretend it doesn't exist. I really want Bill Godshalk to acknowledge that
when he said: "I take the position that there is absolutely NO significant
genetic difference among the peoples of this world" in an earlier posting,
he was taking 'people' as synonymous with 'men' and forgot that the XX/XY
difference is the primary genetic distinction by which oppression has operated.
 
To Lonnie Durham: I like "love, peace, and justice" too. If only there was
'understanding' also, we would not have to argue about how to bring about
more of the first three.
 
Gabriel Egan
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           W. L. Godshalk <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 22:09:19 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 6.0304  Re: Early Modern Subjectivity
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0304  Re: Early Modern Subjectivity
 
Norman Myers invites us to look at THE COMEDY OF ERRORS to explore the problem
of subjectivity. I'm not sure the separation of "my" and "thy" from "self" is
important, but a brief cruise through Hinman's PRINTING AND PROOFREADING should
suggest an answer.
 
In any case, the play certainly poses problems of identity. First, Antipholus
of Syracuse (the traveling Antipholus) feels that he's losing himself since
he's lost his family. For him, personal identity seems linked to family
identity.
 
Adriana feels that her identity is closely linked to Antipholus of Ephesus. But
she, ironically, makes this claim to a man she has never seen before -- her
husband's twin. The situation must have some influence on the way an auditor
takes her assertion.
 
Antipholus of Syracuse begins to unconsciously displace his brother and assume
his social identity, while, at the same time, feeling that his inner identity
is in tact. He doesn't seem to question the integrity of his identity -- merely
the integrity of the Ephesians.
 
Antipholus of Ephesus begins to experience certain changes: he's locked out
from his house when he returns for dinner. He's next given the identity of a
debtor and then a madman. When he and Dromio finally free themselves, both are
pretty violent. Like his Syracusan brother, Ephesus does not seem to feel that
his inner identity is in question. He doesn't accept Pinch's diagnosis of
madness.
 
Of course, Luciana at the beginning of Act II gives the stereotypical
description of males as masters of the universe (and their wives). I gather
that this description is what the "implied culture" of the play holds up as the
ideal.
 
And the action of the play undercuts that description. The males of the play
are masters of nothing, and the identity questions are solved by the Abbess at
play's end.
 
What any of this has to do with "subjectivity" -- if anything -- I leave to
others.
 
Yours, Bill Godshalk

Re: Bear-Baiting

Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 6, No. 0305.  Monday, 17 April 1995.
 
(1)     From:   Karen Krebser <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Saturday, 15 Apr 95 10:30:58 -0700
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0300 Re: Bear-Baiting
 
(2)     From:   Melissa Aaron <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 08:25:48 +0200
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0300 Re: Bear-Baiting
 
(3)     From:   Jerry Bangham <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 13:31:42
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0300  Re: Bear-Baiting
 
(4)     From:   Michael Friedman <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 16:51:08 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0292  Bear-Baiting
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Karen Krebser <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Saturday, 15 Apr 95 10:30:58 -0700
Subject: 6.0300 Re: Bear-Baiting
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0300 Re: Bear-Baiting
 
I spoke earlier in the week of a biography of Shakespeare by Dennis Kay. Here's
the reference:
 
Kay, Dennis. Shakespeare: His Life, Work, and Era. Great Britain: Sidgwick &
Jackson Ltd. New York: William Morrow, Quill Editions. 1992.
 
Regarding bear-baiting, I quote from Chapter 4, "From the Country to the City":
 
On the southy bank of the Thames, for example, citizens could disport
themselves in brothels or at the bear-baiting stadium. Bear- baiting by dogs
was a pastime in which the English took some considerable pride, a sport in
which they regarded themselves as superior to their effete continental cousins.
In 1506, Erasmus commented on the great herds of bears maintained to supply the
ring. From the reign of Henry VIII onward, the office of Master of the Royal
Game was a significant court position. In 1526 a substantial amphitheater or
circus (the classical precedent added to the dignity of these celebrations in
New Troy) was constructed in the Paris Garden on the Bankside in Southwark. The
building could hold about a thousand spectators, with admission later fixed at
a penny for the cheap places and twice as much for the upper galleries. Both
bulls and bears were baited by mastiffs in this building until in 1570 a second
circus was constructed in an adjoining field and the bullfights were
transferred there, leaving the bears in the older ring. And so they continued
until they were suppressed by the Long Parliament in 1642, leaving behind a
folk memory of the bulldog as the embodiment of indomitable patriotism. (84)
 
[There's much more in this chapter. a very interesting story, I think.
Karen Krebser]
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Melissa Aaron <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 08:25:48 +0200
Subject: 6.0300 Re: Bear-Baiting
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0300 Re: Bear-Baiting
 
Caveat on real bears in WT:  Earlier that same year, two white bears were used
to pull the Prince of Wales' chariot in *Oberon*.  I find it difficult to
believe that live bears were allowed so close to the Prince of Wales. And polar
bears are notoriously fierce and impossible to train.  This suggests to me some
kind of fabulous costume.  Upon which, seeing it backstage as the King's Men
prepared to go on as the Satyrs, a certain playwright noticed the costume and
said "Uhh. . .you're not going to be using this again--are you?" and a famous
stage direction is born.
 
I've got a fuller paper on this plus some good bibliography if anyone is
interested--but I would strongly recommend the articles by George Reynolds and
Michael Hattaway.
 
Melissa Aaron
 
(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Jerry Bangham <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 13:31:42
Subject: 6.0300  Re: Bear-Baiting
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0300  Re: Bear-Baiting
 
While we may be glad that Bear-Baiting is no longer with us, performing bears
very much are.  The only thing that I didn't particularly like about the
amazing Moscow Circus was the rather pathetic assortment of performing bears.
At least one of the bears had the chance to be self-assertive when it had an
altercation with another bear and then made a quick excursion into the
audience.
 
Much more in the spirit of Elizabethan popular entertainment are the bears that
appear as street entertainers in many countries.  I remember, years ago, coming
up into the market in Mexico City from the subway and suddenly being jostled. I
turned and found myself looking up at a very large bear.  I've also seen
performing bears on the streets of Istanbul.
 
I can't imagine street bears in the US, but there was a fuss about a wrestling
bear in Mississippi a few years ago. So, it appears that man's fascination with
bears has continued over the ages, if in a somewhat more humane form.
 
(4)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Michael Friedman <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 16:51:08 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 6.0292  Bear-Baiting
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0292  Bear-Baiting
 
Colin,
 
One of the most interesting pieces I ever read about bear baiting is Stephen
Dickey's "Shakespeare's Mastiff Comedy" in *Shakespeare Quarterly* volume 42
issue 3 (Fall, 1991): 255-75.
                                                        Michael Friedman
                                                        University of Scranton

Subscribe to Our Feeds

Search

Make a Donation

Consider making a donation to support SHAKSPER.