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Home :: Archive :: 1996 :: September ::
Re: Old Criticism; State of Profession; Alternate Sh 2
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, SHK 7.0695.  Wednesday, 25 September 1996.

(1)     From:   David M Richman <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 24 Sep 1996 11:58:30 -0400 (EDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 7.0690 Re: Old Criticism

(2)     From:   Jeff Myers <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 24 Sep 1996 17:15:27 GMT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 7.0665  Re: The State of the Profession

(3)     From:   Naomi Liebler <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 24 Sep 96 13:41:00 EST
        Subj:   RE: SHK 7.0693  SHAKSPER Ether Demon Alert


(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           David M Richman <
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Date:           Tuesday, 24 Sep 1996 11:58:30 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: 7.0690 Re: Old Criticism
Comment:        Re: SHK 7.0690 Re: Old Criticism

Just two additions to Tom Bishop's fine list.  Una Ellis-Fermor, especially in
*Shakespeare the Dramatist* papers published posthumously in, I believe,the
early 'sixties, remains enormously useful to me.  Her premise that drama is a
revelation of thought and character through action remains as useful a starting
point for a discussion or even a course as I know.  Her wide-ranging analysis
of "action" is as useful as any I have encountered since.  She usefully
distinguishes the "dramatic mode"from other forms of expression.

Granville-Barker's prefaces are still enormously useful to anyone engaged in
production.  He is a director one can argue with and learn from.  He's also,
after half a century, wise and practical on the implications for production of
the multiple early texts.  (Base a production of Lear on the Folio, he advises,
but incorporates a few bits--especially the mock trial--from the Quarto.)
After all the sound and fury on Q and F Lear, this remains sound advice.
David Richman  University of New Hampshire

(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Jeff Myers <
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Date:           Tuesday, 24 Sep 1996 17:15:27 GMT
Subject: 7.0665  Re: The State of the Profession
Comment:        Re: SHK 7.0665  Re: The State of the Profession

If there was a golden age of hiring, it was well before my time (1984 Ph.D.).
One can say, however, that this iron age of ours is becoming progressively
rustier.  When I was on the market, 200-500 applicants per position was not
rare.  For our last hire, over which I presided as chair, we had over 700
applicants.  I was amazed at the accomplishments of at least half of them.  One
graduate-student applicant with a forthcoming publication in PMLA didn't even
get an interview with us.  With this many applicants, one can be very picky. I
don't know that there is a formula for success.  Luck clearly has something to
do with it.

On the other hand, I wonder if this admittedly bleak situation calls for the
elimination of Ph.D. programs at non-elite institutions.  I teach at a small
undergraduate college, and while we have a few graduates with the motivation
and talent to be successful at any of the elite schools, a number of our
graduates choose graduate programs at less elite institutions not to prepare
for college- or university-level teaching, but becase a few more years reading
and writing about literature seems more rewarding than entering a job market
that is bleak for almost any B.A., no matter what the major.  I don't want to
deny this option to these young people, especially when the alternative might
be waitressing or working in a shopping mall. These students are far from
"unsuspecting."  And a small percentage (admittedly, very small) will get to
teach with us, and the rest will probably not damage their careers in other
fields by having a Ph.D. Now, is any of this worth what Robert Appelbaum calls
"a terrible oversupply of resentment"?  I don't know.  As the son of a
working-class father who dropped out of high school to join the Marines, I can
tell you that it is also possible to resent not being allowed or encouraged to
strive for educational goals.  I guess I can at least see a defense for Bill
Godshalk fighting for his graduate program other than self-interest.  In fact,
our self-interest might be better served by creating fewer potential
competitors.

(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Naomi Liebler <
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 >
Date:           Tuesday, 24 Sep 96 13:41:00 EST
Subject: 7.0693  SHAKSPER Ether Demon Alert
Comment:        RE: SHK 7.0693  SHAKSPER Ether Demon Alert

One Mo' Time (as this was evidently one of the ether-demonized submissions):

SHAKSPERians will be happy to know about the recent publication of _Alternative
Shakespeares 2_, edited and introduced by fellow list-ener Terry Hawkes, and
just out from Routledge. The volume contains essays (all new, commissioned for
this volume) by Steven Mullaney, Catherine Belsey, Margreta de Grazia, Bruce
Smith, Alan SInfield, Keir Elam, Ania Loomba, Dympna Callaghan, Philip
Armstrong, and an Afterword by John Drakakis. Hawkes's intro is itself worth
the price of the book, and then you get all those other essays with it. Kind of
like Tom Berger's Malone Society deal, except this 1 is 11-4-1.

Happy reading.
Naomi Liebler
 

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