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Home :: Archive :: 1998 :: November ::
Re: Shrews Behaving Badly
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 9.1151  Tuesday, 17 November 1998.

[1]     From:   Ed Taft <
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        Date:   Monday, 16 Nov 1998 09:32:29 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Shrews Behaving Badly

[2]     From:   Richard A Burt <
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        Date:   Monday, 16 Nov 1998 13:49:22 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re:  Shrews Behaving Badly


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Ed Taft <
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Date:           Monday, 16 Nov 1998 09:32:29 -0500 (EST)
Subject:        Shrews Behaving Badly

Barbara Hume's account (based on Krentz's collection of essays) of the
appeal and inner workings of the romance novel sounds powerfully
persuasive to me, even though I am a man and don't read many of them.
But I have read *Jane Eyre,* and it seems to me that Hume's analysis
fits to a tee what happens between Jane and Rochester, even to the need
for Bronte to "wound" Rochester so that his masculinity is less
threatening and he is forced to admit dependence on Jane, at least to
some extent.

I would also ask Barbara whether she thinks that the "romance formula"
she adumbrates fits *All's Well* and *MM*? In the former, Bertram seems
to be quite handsome and sexually appealing, but Helena has to outwit
him, make him grow up, and, literally, save him from the "dark" side of
himself, no?  And much the same is true, at least potentially, in
Shakespeare's depiction of Angelo and Mariana, who, with the help of the
Duke and Isabella, at least gives Angelo (who probably is another
handsome cad) a second chance. Indeed, Shakespeare's use of the "romance
genre" suggests that his comedies in general and the "problem" plays in
particular, are written with the women in his audience firmly in mind.
By the way, Barbara, I know of exactly such a male as you describe at
the end of your post. His initials are E.T., and you can e-mail me
privately if you want to know more.

--Ed Taft

[2]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Richard A Burt <
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Date:           Monday, 16 Nov 1998 13:49:22 -0500 (EST)
Subject:        Re:  Shrews Behaving Badly

Those readers interested in romance novels might take note of an essay
by Laurie Osborne on Shakespeare in romance novels (such as _The Lady
Who Shakespeare_, _Shylock's Daughter_, and so on).  She has a version
on line, and two different print versions are forthcoming in
anthologies, one co-edited by Don Hedrick and Bryan Reynolds entitled
_Shakespeare Without Class_ (St. Martins, 1999).  In that same volume, I
have an essay on the gay and lesbian romance with _Romeo and Juliet_.

Best,
Richard
 

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