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Home :: Archive :: 1999 :: June ::
Re: "Protesting too much"
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 10.0930  Wednesday, 2 June 1999.

[1]     From:   Charles Costello <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 1 Jun 1999 11:37:46 -0400 (EDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 10.0927 "Protesting too much"

[2]     From:   Stuart Manger <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 1 Jun 1999 22:08:47 +0100
        Subj:   SHK 10.0927 "Protesting too much"


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Charles Costello <
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Date:           Tuesday, 1 Jun 1999 11:37:46 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: 10.0927 "Protesting too much"
Comment:        Re: SHK 10.0927 "Protesting too much"

Are there rhetorical or poetical terms for lies?  There are certainly
theological terms for such utterances.  See Craun, Edwin.  Lies,
Slander, and Obscenity in Medieval English Literature:  Pastoral
Rhetoric and the Deviant Speaker.  Cambridge:  CUP, 1997.  The
theological prohibition against lying greatly mediates any direct
incorporation of actual lying into verbal systems, such as poetics and
rhetoric, that seek cultural legitimacy in societies that partake of
such ideals.

In such a society, the state doesn't lie either, of course.
"Propaganda" is one term that comes to mind.

I can imagine a Canadian newspaper celebrating yet another campaign
against poverty, but I still prefer to live with that than the headlines
of state-run media.

Chuck Costello
University of Toronto

M. Morford wrote, in part:

>What is it called when one makes a statement like Cassio's "I'm not
>drunk.  This is my right hand, etc"  in "Othello." Surely the only time
>one would make that statement is when one IS drunk. Just as the media in
>China would say that there are no beggars only because there ARE
>beggars.
>
>Could you imagine a headline in the US proclaiming the elimination of
>poverty?
>
>I just saw that headline in Beijing.
>
>What is that called? How could I trace these kinds of statements?
>
>How do I categorize/interpret these kinds of statements?
>
>Hamlet's "Methinks he doth protest too much" sums it up, but do we have
>a name for it?

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Stuart Manger <
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Date:           Tuesday, 1 Jun 1999 22:08:47 +0100
Subject: "Protesting too much"
Comment:        SHK 10.0927 "Protesting too much"

'So are they all, all honourable men'

Same kind of irony?

Followed by Oct /Ant: 'See with a spot I damn him'?

And Lady Macbeth: 'What need we fear it when none can call our power to
accompt'?

Stuart Manger
 

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