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Home :: Archive :: 1997 :: December ::
Qs: Queen Lear; Using IT to Teach Shakespeare
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 8.1223.  Wednesday, 10 December 1997.

[1]     From:   Laurie Rae Dietrich <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 9 Dec 1997 11:43:29 EST
        Subj:   Queen Lear

[2]     From:   Alan Perry <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 9 Dec 1997 14:59:09 -0800
        Subj:   [Using IT to Teach Shakespeare]


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Laurie Rae Dietrich <
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Date:           Tuesday, 9 Dec 1997 11:43:29 EST
Subject:        Queen Lear

Fellow SHAKSPER-eans...

I'm interested in soliciting opinions about a production of Lear in
which the role is played by and as a woman.

The proposal is being debated by our board for a 98-99 production, and
the group is quite split about it.

The concept is to use a celtic/matriarchal context (think Lear =
Boadicea) in which to spotlight the parent/child, age/youth,
waning/waxing power motifs.  The daughters would still be played as
daughters.  No other significant changes would be made to the text.

Objections have ranged from the simple condemnation of the concept as
"gimmicky" to a more complex argument that these gender choices would
undermine the Lawrencian interpretation of the father-daughter
relationships (particularly the relationship between Lear and Cordelia)
as "incestuously suspect."

I also understand that there have been other productions with a woman in
the lead...even one fairly recently in London?  Does anyone know
anything about that aspect of Lear's production history, or have any
suggestions as to how I might research the matter?

I'm very interested in hearing any reactions to this concept..

Laurie Rae Dietrich
Artistic Director
The Shoestring Shakespeare Company
San Antonio, Texas

[2]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Alan Perry <
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Date:           Tuesday, 9 Dec 1997 14:59:09 -0800
Subject:        [Using IT to Teach Shakespeare]

In January I will begin an experiment with my 12th grade students in the
use of videotapes, the Internet, computers and CD-ROMs in the study of
Shakespearean plays (both Hamlet and Macbeth).  I have done what I feel
is a fairly extensive literature review, and I have not found much that
has been published on the use of such technology in the teaching of
Shakespeare.  If you know of a publication of any type on this subject,
or if you have tried using technology in your classroom, I would very
much appreciate your sharing that information with me.  I would
especially like to hear from those of you who have conducted your own
experiments and of your success or failure in using technology.  Thank
you.
 

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