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Home :: Archive :: 2000 :: April ::
Re: The Topic
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 11.0711  Wednesday, 5 April 2000.

[1]     From:   Gabriel Egan <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 4 Apr 2000 17:26:51 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.0686 Re: The Topic

[2]     From:   Judith Matthews Craig <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 4 Apr 2000 20:51:13 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.0686 Re: The Topic


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Gabriel Egan <
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Date:           Tuesday, 4 Apr 2000 17:26:51 +0100
Subject: 11.0686 Re: The Topic
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.0686 Re: The Topic

John Lee writes:

>Oh go on then, I'll take the bait and angelic teasing again, and ask why
>on earth Saussure is quoted to prove (the principle) that language isn't
>an innocent window (or even an evil window) but is instead performative.

Glance at my name winkingly noted.

If I've got my Saussure right (and Leonard Jackson's The
Dematerialization of Marx made me wonder), we can trace to him the
necessary antecedents (about arbitrary signifier-signified relations,
and about the absence of positive terms) of the modern idea that
language doesn't  merely reflect or denote the world but also
constitutes it. That modern idea (which has been contested on SHAKSPER
in the past-remember the 0-10 rule) makes saying something a significant
engagement with reality, not a free-floating adjunct which others might
or might not connect with reality.

Naming a thing changes it (at the very least into a named thing) and
that's what I meant by language not being an innocent window. The
absolute right to free speech distinguishes between merely saying and
actually doing, or stimulating others to do. The distinction is
untenable.

I hope the above also answers Tom Reedy.

Having counted well beyond 10 I'm happy to let L Swilley's acceptance of
the need for censorship in the case of "unformed minds" stand as a
significant step in the right direction. Many SHAKSPERians are employed
at shaping unformed minds, and educators in the United Kingdom now
profess a belief in the value of "lifelong learning". Bravo.

Gabriel Egan

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Judith Matthews Craig <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Tuesday, 4 Apr 2000 20:51:13 -0500
Subject: 11.0686 Re: The Topic
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.0686 Re: The Topic

Ed Taft asks me what the "subtext" of the reference to Romano in WT 5.2
means.  Well.  I have not read the play in some years, but I'll take a
stab at the generalized sense.  Leonates has "frozen" his wife into a
death-like state similar to that of a statue because of his insane and
unreasoned (by that I mean unsupported by facts) jealousy.  She cannot
relate to him and he denies her "life." In the play, she is a statue
after the art of Guilio Romano, who according to the list depicted
various stages of intercourse in almost pornographic detail.  I take the
"subtext" to mean that she is not a literal statue nor an unfeeling slab
of stone if reality were not one-dimensional and determined by her
husband's "gaze" and attitude.    She has the potential to be sexually
alive and satisfying in the most graphic sense if she had been "seen" so
by her husband.

Judy
 

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