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Home :: Archive :: 1995 :: June ::
Re: Taylor/Jowell Argument: *MM*
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 6, No. 0493.  Monday, 19 June 1995.
 
(1)     From:   James Harner <
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        Date:   Friday, 16 Jun 1995 13:05:24 -0500 (CDT)
        Subj:   RE: SHK 6.0489  Qs: Taylor/Jowell Argument: *MM*
 
(2)     From:   W.L. Godshalk <
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        Date:   Sunday, 18 Jun 1995 16:09:56 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0489  Qs: Taylor/Jowell Argument: *MM*
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           James Harner <
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Date:           Friday, 16 Jun 1995 13:05:24 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: 6.0489  Qs: Taylor/Jowell Argument: *MM*
Comment:        RE: SHK 6.0489  Qs: Taylor/Jowell Argument: *MM*
 
RE: Taylor and Jowett, _Shakespeare Reshaped_
 
Additional reviews:
Dickerson, D. O. _Choice_ 31 (1993-94): 1583;
Howard-Hill, T. H. _Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America_
        88 (1994): 522;
McCabe, Richard. _Theatre Research International_ 19 (1994): 269-70;
Vosevich, Mathia A. _Sixteenth Century Journal_ 25 (1994): 912-13;
White, R. S. _Notes and Queries_ 41 (1994): 560-61;
Champion, Larry S. _English Studies_ 76 (1995): 102-3.
 
Jim Harner
World Shakespeare Bibliography
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           W.L. Godshalk <
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Date:           Sunday, 18 Jun 1995 16:09:56 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 6.0489  Qs: Taylor/Jowell Argument: *MM*
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0489  Qs: Taylor/Jowell Argument: *MM*
 
>I have a query for the group.  I just finished the middle section of Gary
>Taylor and John Jowett's *Shakespeare Reshaped 1606-1623*, which argues, in a
>nutshell, that the Folio version of *Measure for Measure* contains two later
>interpolations by hands other than Shakespeare's: 1) the opening 77 or so lines
>of 1.2, featuring the banter between Lucio, Mistress Overdone, and the two
>gentlemen (probably written by Middleton), and 2) the opening of 4.1 (the
>moated grange scene) including the song (by Fletcher) and the rest of the
>dialogue until the entrance of Isabella (probably by Webster).  I won't go into
>the arguments here, but suffice it to say that there is enough objective
>stylistic evidence to make the hypothesis seem disconcertingly possible.
 
In reply to Michael Friedman's question about reviews of the Taylor/Jowett
argument, I haven't seen any, but that should not discourage us from talking
about the argument here. Jowett and Taylor have to date the manuscript from
which the Folio MM was set after Shakespeare's death.  "Only in <i>Measure for
Measure<i/> does a convincing instance of theatrical botching coexist with
independent and convincing evidence that the Folio text derives from a
manuscript prepared after Shakespeare's death -- a manuscript, moreover,
probably copied from the company's prompt-book [by Ralph Crane]" (123). Jowett
and Taylor then select several passages that have been seen as textual cruxes,
and suggest that these cruxes can be solved if we assume that the play was
revised for a later revival. They suggest five emendations to the Folio text
(231).
 
Can we tell the difference among  "prompt-book," "foul papers," and "fair copy"
by analyzing a printed playscript? As you know, Bill Long has cast a great deal
of doubt on our ability to do this.  Seventeenth century promptbooks do not
look like nineteenth century promptbooks.  So how can we be sure that the ms.
standing behind the Folio text was a promptbook with later interpolations by
Middleton, Fletcher, and Webster?
 
Well we have parallels in language and usage.  We have historical arguments and
evidence from other playscripts.
 
Jowett and Taylor present a long and complex argument, and I suppose it should
be analyzed point by point.
 
If Don Foster is monitoring this, I wonder what his software says about the
possible interpolations in MM. Any blips on the screen?
 
Yours, Bill Godshalk
 

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