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Home :: Archive :: 1996 :: January ::
Re: Development of Individualism
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 7, No. 0002. Thursday, 4 January 1996.

(1)     From:   Joanne Woolway <joanne.woolway%oriel.oxford.ac.uk@ukacrl>
        Date:   Wednesday, 13 Dec 1995 12:06:45 +0000 (GMT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0960 Q: Development of Individualism

(2)     From:   Ton Hoenselaars <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 13 Dec 1995 14:59:35 -0600 (CST)
        Subj:   RE: SHK 6.0960  Q: Development of Individualism;

(3)     From:   W. L. Godshalk <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 13 Dec 1995 09:56:52 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0960  Q: Development of Individualism

(4)     From:   Jesus Cora <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 13 Dec 1995 18:42:55 UTC+0200
        Subj:   SHK 6.0960  Q: Development of Individualism;

(5)     From:   Kezia Vanmeter Sproat <
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        Date:   Thursday, 14 Dec 1995 08:49:05 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0960 Q: Development of Individualism


(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Joanne Woolway <joanne.woolway%oriel.oxford.ac.uk@ukacrl>
Date:           Wednesday, 13 Dec 1995 12:06:45 +0000 (GMT)
Subject: 6.0960 Q: Development of Individualism
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0960 Q: Development of Individualism

For Jesus Cora-

Re: individualism and theatre.

I suggest you try Katharine Eisman Maus's Inwardness and Theater in the English
Renaissance (Chicago UP, 1995). There's a review of it in Early Modern Literary
Studies - http://unixg.ubc.ca:7001/0/e-sources/emls/emlshome.html

Joanne Woolway

(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Ton Hoenselaars <
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Date:           Wednesday, 13 Dec 1995 14:59:35 -0600 (CST)
Subject: 6.0960  Q: Development of Individualism;
Comment:        RE: SHK 6.0960  Q: Development of Individualism;

Dear Jesus Cora, there should be a great deal of interest in Catherine Belsey's
*The Subject of Tragedy*. Her pages on *Hamlet* might prove particularly
stimulating.
                               Ton Hoenselaars, Utrecht University

(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           W. L. Godshalk <
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Date:           Wednesday, 13 Dec 1995 09:56:52 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 6.0960  Q: Development of Individualism
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0960  Q: Development of Individualism

Jesus Cora writes:

>I am very interested in the development of individualism and self-consciousness
>during the first part of the 17th century and its influence on the drama of the
>period. Could you kindly recommend bibliography on the subject? I am specially
>interested on the parallel development of self-conciousness and self-reference
>in drama (you know, metatheatre and metadrama).

Since I was a young boy, I've heard the assertion that individualism and
self-consciousness did not exist before a period vaguely defined as the
Renaissance.  One reason for this assertion was unsigned works of art in a
period vaguely defined as the Middle Ages.  But, of course, there are plenty of
signed works of art in this amorphous period: Boethius, Dante, Chaucer, not to
mention the dead white female Europeans like Heloise and Christine de Pisan.
And there was plenty of individualism and self-consciousness in the
Graeco-Roman period.  Would we say that Socrates was not self-conscious? That
Gaius Julius Caesar was not individualistic?  And Cleopatra? Plutarch?

I realize that we are here dealing with subjectivity -- impossible to isolate
and analyze in the laboratory.  But isn't it just possible that individualism
and self-conscious subjectivity (is there another kind?) are part of what
defines us as an animal species? Or is it even possible that all mammals are
self-conscious individualists?  I realize that Montaigne contemplated these
questions in the 16th century.  (My cat just jumped into my lap!)

Yours, Bill Godshalk

(4)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Jesus Cora <
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Date:           Wednesday, 13 Dec 1995 18:42:55 UTC+0200
Subject: Q: Development of Individualism;
Comment:        SHK 6.0960  Q: Development of Individualism;

Dear Shakespeareans,

On reading my e-mail, especially
        1) the discussion on soliloquies and the question of whether they must
        be interpreted as the expression of inner thought, and
        2) my own query about the development of self-consciousness in early
        modern England,
it has occurred to me that soliloquies "must need" reflect the interest in
self-consciousness and inner-life of individuals that developed in early modern
England. Therefore, in consonance with this interest, soliloquies must not have
been delivered, so to speak, "looking the audience in the eye", but in a more
detached way, as a "private" expression of the inner-self. I know that the
conditions of performance in The Globe or other amphitheatres would not favour
such practice, but, on the other hand, I think that Elizabethans would
perfectly understand such procedure. Direct address to the audience belongs to
the early mysteries, moralities and interludes, when the conventions and
mechanics of drama were not so sophisticated.

Yours,
Jesus Cora
Universidad de Alcala de Henares.

(5)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Kezia Vanmeter Sproat <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Thursday, 14 Dec 1995 08:49:05 -0500
Subject: 6.0960 Q: Development of Individualism
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0960 Q: Development of Individualism

My late friend Rolf Soellner wrote a book, Shakespeare's Patterns of
Self-Knowledge, published in 1972. It might be a good start.
 

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