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Home :: Archive :: 2000 :: May ::
Re: Ghosts
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 11.1015  Thursday, 11 May 2000.

[1]     From:   Tanya Gough <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 10 May 2000 10:31:41 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1005 Question on Ghosts

[2]     From:   Leslie Thomson <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 10 May 2000 10:37:14 -0400 (EDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1005 Question on Ghosts

[3]     From:   Nick Moschovakis <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 10 May 2000 10:54:19 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1005 Question on Ghosts

[4]     From:   William Proctor Williams <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 10 May 2000 17:24:45 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1005 Question on Ghosts


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Tanya Gough <
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Date:           Wednesday, 10 May 2000 10:31:41 -0400
Subject: 11.1005 Question on Ghosts
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1005 Question on Ghosts

>.It's such a cliche of later ghost story imagery, but
>where does it come from?

I'm not sure, but my trusty store manager Noah, who happens to be a Goth
and knows more about these things than anyone else I know, tells me
there is a story by M. R. James called "O Whistle and I'll Come to You"
(1904) wherein a man accidentally summons a ghost by blowing on a
medieval whistle he finds on the beach.  The ghost eludes him throughout
the story, showing up only in brief glimpses, but finally reveals
himself at the end by manipulating the bedsheets.  The narrator falls
out the window from fear and dies.

There may be earlier references, but we both agreed that Gothic period
ghosts were more linked to the subconscious and were more ephemeral in
nature.

Tanya "Boogity boogity" Gough
Poor Yorick Shakespeare Multimedia Catalog

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Leslie Thomson <
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Date:           Wednesday, 10 May 2000 10:37:14 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: 11.1005 Question on Ghosts
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1005 Question on Ghosts

For Carol Morley: There is, I hope, a thorough survey of ghosts in plays
in *A Dictionary of Stage Directions in English Drama, 1580-1642* (Alan
C. Dessen and Leslie Thomson, CUP, 1999)--if it isn't in your library,
it should be! But if it isn't, and you want more information, contact me
off-list.

Leslie Thomson

[Editor's Note: At the Montreal SAA meeting, I purchased a copy of the
Dessen-Thomson *A Dictionary of Stage Directions in English Drama,
1580-1642*. It is an indispensable tool for Early Modern theatre
scholars -- immediate erudition as it were. This reference should be on
everyone's desk right next to *William Shakespeare: A Textual
Companion*. The problem is that it is only available in hard cover and
it is not inexpensive even with conference discounts. I encourage all
SHAKSPEReans to write or e-mail or fax Cambridge University Press,
requesting that the Press re-issue this book as a paperback so that it
is more affordable to all. Please do this for the entire scholarly
community; this work deserves as wide a circulation as it can get.
--Hardy]

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Nick Moschovakis <
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Date:           Wednesday, 10 May 2000 10:54:19 -0500
Subject: 11.1005 Question on Ghosts
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1005 Question on Ghosts

The ghost in white-face in Beaumont's *Knight of the Burning Pestle* is
often interpreted as a recollection of *Macbeth*.

Nick Moschovakis

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           William Proctor Williams <
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Date:           Wednesday, 10 May 2000 17:24:45 +0100
Subject: 11.1005 Question on Ghosts
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1005 Question on Ghosts

Well, Hamlet Sr. appears the third time "in his night gowne" (Q1), and
assuming that nightgowns then where white then . . . .

William Proctor Williams

[Editor's Note: Next to "Exit pursued by a Beare," this stage direction
from Q1 Hamlet is exceeding intriguing in that during the period the
custom was to sleep in the nude.  --Hardy]
 

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