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Home :: Archive :: 2000 :: December ::
Re: Edward Bond's 'Bingo
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 11.2269  Friday, 8 December 2000

[1]     From:   Thomas Cartelli <
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        Date:   Thursday, 7 Dec 2000 10:29:39 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.2223 Re: Edward Bond's 'Bingo'

[2]     From:   Rinda Frye <
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        Date:   Thursday, 07 Dec 2000 15:36:24 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.2261 Re: Edward Bond's 'Bingo'


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Thomas Cartelli <
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Date:           Thursday, 7 Dec 2000 10:29:39 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 11.2223 Re: Edward Bond's 'Bingo'
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.2223 Re: Edward Bond's 'Bingo'

Dear List:

The shallowly dismissive and (dare I say it?) anti-intellectual
responses of Swilley and Gollob to David Nicol's request for our
collaboration in helping him teach Edward Bond's BINGO have become all
too symptomatic of the way contributors to this List operate.  If they
were written by any of our own students, we would presumably explain
(see Milla Riggio's recent responses to Sam Small) that even only
presumptive artworks require our patient efforts at understanding.  That
the contributors in question are themselves academic professionals
strongly suggests that they are misusing their privilege to respond, if
that privilege is held to involve intellectual exchange and not merely
the exchange of opinion.

As for Mr Nicol's questions, I would say that while BINGO no doubt
represents a gloomy, somewhat over-demanding view of the relationship
between life and art--one that requires Shakespeare the man to fall into
despair at his failure to maintain the same fierce attitude towards
injustice as the post-Storm scene King Lear--it dramatizes his closing
days in a haunting and provocative manner: one that requires
considerable readjustment of the pastoralized (pasteurized?) "scenes
from the life" approach of Shakespeare's hagiographers.  Bond's
Shakespeare is at once very much a (profoundly flawed) man and an artist
whose "late romances" have clearly brought no "reconciliation" to his
private life. In this he arguably becomes a more modern figure of the
artist who must make a moral and political reckoning of where his life
and work have taken him, but Bond clearly is less interested in
biographical accuracy than he is in drawing Shakespeare into the orbit
of his own (largely political) preoccupations. I would also advise a
collateral reading of Bond's LEAR along with BINGO since Bond's ideas
about the Lear-figure circulate throughout his construction of
Shakespeare's last days.  I would finally advise your consulting a
brilliant paper on BINGO written by David Middleton which has better
answers to your questions than I have.

Tom Cartelli

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Rinda Frye <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Thursday, 07 Dec 2000 15:36:24 -0500
Subject: 11.2261 Re: Edward Bond's 'Bingo'
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.2261 Re: Edward Bond's 'Bingo'

In 1978, while I was a graduate student at the University of Oregon, I
worked to sponsor a visit from an RSC touring group.  Patrick Stewart
and Paul Shelley were 2 of the 5 people in the group.  Patrick had
played Shakespeare in Bingo and Paul had played the Fool.  They treated
us to a barebones staged reading of the play in a tiny theatre there.
The reading was fantastic--one of the best pieces of theatre I've been
fortunate to witness.  I'd read the play carefully well before their
visit and had found it funny, disturbing, and brilliant.  I still admire
Bond's work.
 

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