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Home :: Archive :: 2000 :: April ::
Re: Sonnet 20
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 11.0765  Wednesday, 12 April 2000.

[1]     From:   Ed Taft <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 11 Apr 2000 08:31:03 -0400 (EDT)
        Subj:   Sonnet 20

[2]     From:   Judith Matthews Craig <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 11 Apr 2000 15:46:54 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.0751 Re: Sonnet 20


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Ed Taft <
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Date:           Tuesday, 11 Apr 2000 08:31:03 -0400 (EDT)
Subject:        Sonnet 20

Thanks to Douglas Chapman for a thoughtful analysis of Sonnet 20 and a
reminder to academics that all too often we do not meet the ideals of
our dual profession. I remember reading Eric Hoffer's newspaper column
as a kid: as I recall, he had a lot of common-sense things to say, as
does Douglas Chapman.

I wonder if our fascination with Sonnet 20 is a mark of changing times.
There is a good argument to be made that in some ways sexuality was
different in Shakespeare's day: to whit, that bi-sexuality was more
common. I wonder if society is moving back in that direction and our
concerns and anxieties about it are being reflected in our views of
Sonnet 20?

--Ed Taft

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Judith Matthews Craig <
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Date:           Tuesday, 11 Apr 2000 15:46:54 -0500
Subject: 11.0751 Re: Sonnet 20
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.0751 Re: Sonnet 20

Douglas Chapman writes:

<The point is, Sonnet 20 (one of many) is erotic. Could it be
homoerotic?
<Of course. Could it be heteroerotic? Of course. This duality is part of
<the greatness of Shak. Is this not what "The Universality <of Shak." is
<all about?  What's with the denials? "Protecting" Shak. <the man, his
<times, or more likely an individual's prejudices is not <scholarship.

In the interests of "unprotecting Shakespeare" I would like to see an
argument advanced rather than an ad hominem attack.  Some of us
"prickless" pricks thought that the "universality of Shakespeare" meant
that he was more interested in the impact of time on people and events
or perhaps the value of universal ideas as they applied to the universal
human condition as depicted in poetry rather than in the depiction of a
mindless blob of gutter sexuality common to any bestial human willing to
indulge it.

Judy Craig
 

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