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Home :: Archive :: 1996 :: November ::
Re: Large Marine Mammals and the Beatles
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, SHK 7.0870.  Friday, 22 November 1996.

(1)     From:   James Schaefer <
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        Date:   Thursday, 21 Nov 1996 11:21:48 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 7.0865  Re: Popular Culture

(2)     From:   Andrew Walker White <
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        Date:   Thursday, 21 Nov 1996 12:34:57 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Walruses and Kings

(3)     From:   Mason West <
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        Date:   Thursday, 21 Nov 1996 12:42:18 -0200
        Subj:   Re: SHK 7.0865  Re: Popular Culture

(4)     From:   Whit Wales <
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        Date:   Thursday, 21 Nov 1996 12:30:45 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 7.0865  Re: Popular Culture


(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           James Schaefer <
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Date:           Thursday, 21 Nov 1996 11:21:48 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 7.0865  Re: Popular Culture
Comment:        Re: SHK 7.0865  Re: Popular Culture

RE: Eric Weil's comments:

Linguistic errors are very interesting.  Weil cited the Lear quotations in the
Beatle's song, "I Am the Whale"; it was, of course, "I Am the Walrus."  (Cucu
cachoo)  What's interesting is that what he obviously remembered was that the
title included the name of a large marine mammal, and almost 30 yrs later, a
whale pops up.

About the substance of his comments:  The one Lear line that I heard clearly
and that still sticks with me is, "Sit you down, Father; rest ye."  And don't
forget that in the White Album, we are told, "I've got news for you all: / The
walrus was Paul."

There are some who still believe that the music of the band Wings proved that
Paul _did_ die!

Jim Schaefer

(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Andrew Walker White <
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Date:           Thursday, 21 Nov 1996 12:34:57 -0500 (EST)
Subject:        Walruses and Kings

Actually, Mr. Weil, the song title is "I am the Walrus", the most potent,
audible lines at the end of the song are the exchange between Gloucester and
Edgar:

"Is he dead?"
"Sit ye down, father, rest you"

There are references to custard, dead dog's eyes, etc. in the song, so in terms
of popular culture, this ranks as a masterpiece of Bardic interpretation.
There's bound to be a paper in this one, if there hasn't been one or three
written already.

Andy White
Urbana, IL

(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Mason West <
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Date:           Thursday, 21 Nov 1996 12:42:18 -0200
Subject: 7.0865  Re: Popular Culture
Comment:        Re: SHK 7.0865  Re: Popular Culture

Eric Weil wrote:

    A few days ago someone queried on this subject.  Today a
    colleague reminded me that in the Beatles' song, "I am the
    Whale" several lines from _King Lear_ , 4.6.242-50, parts of
    speeches by Oswald, Edgar, and Gloucester are quoted.
    Beginning with "Slave, thou hast slain me" and ending with
    "What, is he dead?" Apparently the song led some people to
    believe that Paul had died.

It's a minor point, but you probably mean "I Am the Walrus," on The Magical
Mystery Tour album. The Shakespearean quotes are incidental audio deep in the
mix, and whoever identified the quotes must have had a far better stereo system
than I did. I could, however, make out the final "What, is he dead?"

-- Mason West
   
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(4)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Whit Wales <
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Date:           Thursday, 21 Nov 1996 12:30:45 -0500
Subject: 7.0865  Re: Popular Culture
Comment:        Re: SHK 7.0865  Re: Popular Culture

> Today a colleague reminded me that in the Beatles' song, "I am the Whale"

"I am the Walrus", perhaps?

Are not the Beatles as sacred as the Bard?! What is he to Hecuba? Lear to
Lennon?

The connection's got to be accurate on both sides, or - Pop goes the Culture...
 

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