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Home :: Archive :: 1995 :: October ::
Re: Shylock and *MV*
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 6, No. 0835.  Tuesday, 24 October 1995.
 
(1)     From:   John Owen <
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        Date:   Monday, 23 Oct 1995 10:50:32 -0700
        Subj:   RE: SHK 6.0830  Re: Shylock and *MV*
 
(2)     From:   David Schalkwyk <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 24 Oct 1995 10:11:18 SAST-2
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0830  Re: Shylock and *MV*
 
(3)     From:   Kay Pilzer <PILZERKL@VUCTRVAX>
        Date:   Tuesday, 24 Oct 1995 08:14:09 -0500 (CDT)
        Subj:   Shk 6.0830 Shylock and *MV*
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           John Owen <
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Date:           Monday, 23 Oct 1995 10:50:32 -0700
Subject: 6.0830  Re: Shylock and *MV*
Comment:        RE: SHK 6.0830  Re: Shylock and *MV*
 
Regarding the first Shylock:
Baldwin guesses Thomas Pope as the first Shylock. In his scheme of things, Pope
was the actor who portrayed the Henry IV Falstaff and was the company's primary
light comedian. Very provocative, that.
 
J.O.
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           David Schalkwyk <
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Date:           Tuesday, 24 Oct 1995 10:11:18 SAST-2
Subject: 6.0830  Re: Shylock and *MV*
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0830  Re: Shylock and *MV*
 
I'm not sure that one should dismiss the plea from humanity in Shylock's speak
simply because part of that condition is a desire for revenge.  The speech has
an intriguing counterpart in _Othello_, and it would be interesting to read the
two speeches against each other, not as indications of "character" but rather
as points of political and moral perspective and possibility:
 
    Emilia:  But I do think it is their husband's faults
    If wives do fall.  Say that they slack their duties,
    And pour our treasures into foreign laps;
    Or else break out in peeviush jealousies,
    Throwing retsraint upon us; or say they strike us,
    Or scant our former having in despite:
    Why, we have galls; and though we have some grace,
    Yet have we some revenge.  Let husbands know
    Their wives have sense like them; they see, and smell,
    And have their palates both for sweet and sour,
    As husbands have.  What is it that they do
    When they change us for others?  Is is sport?
    I think it is.  And doth affection breed it?
    I think it doth.  Is't frailty that thus errs?
    It is so too.  And have we not affections,
    Desires for sport, and frailty, as men have?
    Then let them use us well; else let them know,
    The ills we do, their ills instruct us so.   (IV.iii.86)
 
David Schalkwyk
English Department
University of Cape Town
 
(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Kay Pilzer <PILZERKL@VUCTRVAX>
Date:           Tuesday, 24 Oct 1995 08:14:09 -0500 (CDT)
Subject:        Shk 6.0830 Shylock and *MV*
 
In light of Prof. Applebaum's persuasive argument that *MV* does not address
anxiety about Puritans, how does one read Paul Siegel's 1953 "Shylock and the
Puritan Usurers" (in *Studies in Shakespeare* Ed. Arthur D. Matthews and Clark
M. Emery)?  Siegel traces ways that (he says) Elizabethans linked Puritan and
Jewish views of the Old Testament, of their relationship to law, and their
views of usury.
 
We know that the presence or absence of a feared/reviled minority often has
nothing to do with anxiety/prejudice about the minority.  I found the whole
notion of Antonio and Shylock as mirror or even twin characters to be a fairly
useful interpretative stance.  But I'm new at this.  What do ya'll think?
 
(From Kay Pilzer 
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