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Home :: Archive :: 1995 :: September ::
Re: *WT*; *Cor.*; *R3*
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 6, No. 0722. Tuesday, 26 September 1995.
 
(1)     From:   David Evett <R0870%
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        Date:   Monday, 25 Sep 1995 16:28 ET
        Subj:   WT 4.4
 
(2)     From:   Joseph M Green <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 26 Sep 1995 12:12:48 -0500 (CDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0716  Re; *WT*; *Cor.*; *MV*
 
(3)     From:   Roger D. Gross <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 26 Sep 1995 16:21:33 -0500 (CDT)
        Subj:   Richard III
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           David Evett <R0870%
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Date:           Monday, 25 Sep 1995 16:28 ET
Subject:        WT 4.4
 
The block of the text of _Winter's Tale_ labelled Act 4 Scene 4 in most modern
editions is only "long" if you assign some inherent, substantive weight to the
Anglo-American editing conventions.  Edited in the "French" manner, this
stretch of text produces many scenes (I make out 11, with breaks after lines
54, 155, 180, 217, 323, 342, 443, 597, 621, 686 [Bevington ed.]; others might
find a few more or a few less), each with its distinctive set of speakers,
lexical and rhetorical registers, dominant tonalities, topics, and images,
etc.; the physical setting can be imagined or represented as moving from place
to place around the Shepherd's property, and the whole thing has a structure
very similar to the corresponding stretch of _Antony and Cleopatra_ (with which
WT bears other affinities).  That doesn't mean it might not stand some cutting
(though when I set myself that task it was not easy), but if so it's a line at
a time, not whole chunks.
 
Structurally,
Dave Evett
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Joseph M Green <
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Date:           Tuesday, 26 Sep 1995 12:12:48 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: 6.0716  Re; *WT*; *Cor.*; *MV*
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0716  Re; *WT*; *Cor.*; *MV*
 
The alternate ending for Coriolanus at the Barbican doesn't seem to have much
to recommend it -- at least as interpreted here.  Aufidius, I would think, must
be rather pleased that C. is dead.  This was the point of the conspiracy.  I
don't think that Aufidius misses, of a sudden, C. because now that his great
rival is dead, the reason for his own existence seems hard to descry.  Aufidius
wasn't much of a rival for C. in any case.  He does rather poorly at single
combat with him -- as the servants testify. Aufidius is,of course, also a liar.
 He speaks of his "great rage" for the benefit of the Lords but we know that he
murders C. in cold blood and then tramples his body.
 
I don't know why the producers decided that the people should rise up and kill
C. instead of the conspirators.  The original ending shows C. -- and maybe even
the people a victim of a faction.  Aufidius says that he will kill C. so that
he may be "renewed in his fall." Aufidius is told that the people will remain
uncertain until C. is done away with and one might wonder whether Corioli would
be better off with C. as its defender against the inevitable Roman revenge than
with Aufidius.  In any case, the ending is of a piece -- the people are
manipulated, as usual a faction imposes it will (a faction led by a liar and
not a bad politician) and "noble memory" is cynically manipulated.
 
(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Roger D. Gross <
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Date:           Tuesday, 26 Sep 1995 16:21:33 -0500 (CDT)
Subject:        Richard III
 
I've lost the  name of the SHAKSPERean who asked for advice on resources for
the study of Richard III's villainy but here are two thoughts.
 
The best book I've found on R3 is Wolfgang Clemen's A COMMENTARY ON RICHARD
III, London: Methuen, 1968.  Hugh Richmond's more recent book from the
Shakespeare in Performance series is also very good.
 
For insight into the technique of Richard's villainy, look into the literature
of rhetoric/persuasion/propaganda for the concept of The Big Lie technique.  It
is Richard's main tactic and it has been thoroughly studied in other contexts,
most productively in studies of Hitler's tactics.  The basis of the Big Lie
technique is the fact that if you tell a lie that is big enough and you tell it
brazenly enough, a normally decent person will be taken in because he doesn't
believe anyone could lie so extremely and with a straight face.  That's a
simplistic version of the idea but it might put you on a useful tack.
 
If you want to talk about R3, contact me off-list.  I've directed the show
three times so I've asked myself most of the questions already and found some
kind of answer.
 
[I'm surprised that no one else has responded to this query.  Have we lost
interest in Richard?  I'd like to hear some other opinions.]
 
Roger Gross
U. of Arkansas
 

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