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Home :: Archive :: 1999 :: March ::
Re: DVD; Women; Iago; Marriage Age; Elizabeth
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 10.0447  Friday, 12 March 1999.

[1]     From:   
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        Date:   Thursday, 11 Mar 1999 09:53:57 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 10.0419 Re: DVD

[2]     From:   Stephanie Hughes <
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        Date:   Thursday, March 11, 1999
        Subj:   Re: SHK 10.0427 Re: Women on the Early Modern Stage

[3]     From:   Sean Lawrence <
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        Date:   Thursday, 11 Mar 1999 14:44:33 -0800
        Subj:   Re: SHK 10.0435 Re: Iago

[4]     From:   Stephanie Hughes <
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        Date:   Thursday, 11 Mar 1999 21:45:06 +0000
        Subj:   Re: SHK 10.0394 Re: The Capulets

[5]     From:   Judy Lewis <
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        Date:   Friday, 12 Mar 1999 22:58:11 +1300
        Subj:   Re: SHK 10.0421 Re: "Elizabeth"


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           
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Date:           Thursday, 11 Mar 1999 09:53:57 -0500
Subject: 10.0419 Re: DVD
Comment:        Re: SHK 10.0419 Re: DVD

Marine T. Woodward writes:

>For movie aficionados who want to reproduce the theatrical experience in
>the home, DVD or laser disc player is an excellent investment.  Forget
>DIVX, though... that whole scheme just smacks of Big Brother.

Well, maybe.  I'd argue it's not possible to reproduce a theatrical
experience in the home, only imitate it.  Televisions have lessened
size, resolution and color range; they cannot at the moment produce true
blacks or whites; couple a TV screen with a high end sound signal and an
imbalance results: the sound quality overwhelms that of the middling
picture.  Then there's the whole audience thing, and the issue of
disturbance.  "Home theatre" (apologies to Robin Headlam Wells for the
quotes; here, it's to highlight a marketing strategy) is an obfuscation,
offering what can't be obtained.

DIVX is, as I understand it, a product designed for rentals: the
time-sensitive accessibility of the source material is programmable, so
when you rent a DIVX disc, you pay for the number of days you can watch
it, 1, 2, &c.  After that number of days has passed, the codes become
unreadable by your, or another, DIVX player.  The renter can always add
more days on by paying for additional time.  How this is Big Brother I
don't know-it's a sooped up version of tape rental-although there are
surely issues of freedom of access and such like.

Kirk Hendershott-Kraetzer
Michigan State University

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Stephanie Hughes <
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Date:           Thursday, March 11, 1999
Subject: 10.0427 Re: Women on the Early Modern Stage
Comment:        Re: SHK 10.0427 Re: Women on the Early Modern Stage

Regarding cultural reasons for women not acting in England: the best
thoughts on this in my opinion have to do with the fact that since the
women's parts were generally played by boys, and that a long tradition
of interludes depended on the skills of the men and boys of the various
chapel choirs. When the theater went commercial in the 1600s, this
tradition was simply maintained, shored up, perhaps, by the fears of
City authorities with regard to sexual impropriety.

In a book on Spanish theater of the Renaissance (don't recall the name,
though I can probably dig it up if anyone's interested) I read that
although the Church deplored women onstage, it was even more concerned
about the morals of boys, so it allowed women to act.

Stephanie Hughes

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Sean Lawrence <
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Date:           Thursday, 11 Mar 1999 14:44:33 -0800
Subject: 10.0435 Re: Iago
Comment:        Re: SHK 10.0435 Re: Iago

Maijan writes:

>First of all, thank you for your informative response.

You're quite welcome.

>Cassio, however,
>showed his inability to perform his professional duty at a time of war,
>and thus merited Othello's reprimand in public (I know it is a plot
>requirement, but it nevertheless validates Iago's earlier claim). Would
>not it be that Shakespeare is also commenting on this kind of
>professionalism in England?

Perhaps.  The whole question of Shakespeare's military world calls for
more study.  But in any case, Cassio's eventual failure at wielding
actual command doesn't mean that he didn't seem a logical choice at the
time of his appointment.  Nor does it mean that he got the job for being
Othello's postman.

>This is certainly true; yet one would wonder at the seizure of his
>house: it does not seem that he was anxious to go back (he did not have
>enough time to enjoy his marriage).

I can't find a reference to seizing his property until almost the last
line of the play, by which point it's justified on the grounds that
Othello is dead.  The Riverside footnotes "Gratiano keep the house" by
defining "keep" as "remain in," presumably to guard the evidence and
keep off sight-seers until the bodies can be disposed of.  So I'm not
even sure that Othello owns the place, or has any sort of investment in
Cyprus.  If Iago is correct in claiming that "he goes into Mauritania
and taketh away with him the fair Desdemona" (4.2.224-225), then he can
continue his military career and marriage unabated by his transfer.

>Cassio, too, was so anxious to get
>back his position and does not feel any shame; in fact, he makes it
>obvious that regaining his position means regaining his reputation.

He's loathe to ask, and too ashamed to face Othello directly.

>Marriage for interest was common not only in Venice but all over the
>world (Lawrence Stone whether in his The Family, Sex, and Marriage in
>England: 1500-1800 or in The Crisis of the Aristocracy: 1558-1641,
>documented interesting events). Be it as it may, that does not make
>Othello any different from Iago or Roderigo who follows the war (perhaps
>to earn some extra profits in addition to Desdemona).

I think it's too strong to say that it doesn't "make him any
different".  For all the talk in the west about marrying for love, few
people marry anyone that they don't initially think suitable for other
reasons.  As I argued in a posting that seems to have helped start this
thread, inconsistency doesn't imply ill-will.  Neither do all mixed
motives imply alterior motives.  We needn't say that Othello didn't love
Desdemona, or that he's only interested in her as land in order to
accept that he also sees her as land, perhaps even subconsciously.

Thanks for maintaining such an interesting debate.

Cheers,
Se

 

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