Make a Donation

Consider making a donation to support SHAKSPER.

Subscribe to Our Feeds

Current Postings RSS

Announcements RSS

Home :: Archive :: 2000 :: June ::
Re: Isabella's Chastity
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 11.1143  Friday, 2 June 2000.

[1]     From:   David Bishop <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Thursday, 1 Jun 2000 14:45:51 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1132 Re: Isabella's Chastity

[2]     From:   Florence Amit <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Friday, 02 Jun 2000 09:43:23 +0000
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1119 Re: Isabella's Chastity


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           David Bishop <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Thursday, 1 Jun 2000 14:45:51 -0400
Subject: 11.1132 Re: Isabella's Chastity
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1132 Re: Isabella's Chastity

John Briggs raises the question of Middleton's revision of MM--I doubt
it, but it's worth looking into.

I agree with Robin Hamilton on several particular points, including that
Kate Keepdown is a prostitute. Ed Taft's foreground seems stubbornly to
remain my background, and vice versa. Maybe we'll have to agree to
disagree.  Robin's seeing "the whole presentation of the Duke in the
play as a halfwit" and Ed's contention that "MM is all about fathers"
seem to me inarguable.

David

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Florence Amit <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Friday, 02 Jun 2000 09:43:23 +0000
Subject: 11.1119 Re: Isabella's Chastity
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1119 Re: Isabella's Chastity

I have reread the play and that has put me behind time.  The emphasis on
responsibility to the new generation seems to me notably secondary to
the immediate problems of the young people wedding with propriety. The
comic mode requires it and that is what we see.  Pregnancy, the lack of
dowry, precipitous sexual encounters are all improprieties.  It is very
well to mention babes. (Isabella does not want to have a "LAWLESS"
babe.) But we never see even one outside of its mother's belly. In
agreement with David Bishop, I suppose that the State should be
interested in keeping potential child supporters alive - so therefore
even formally, as caretaker, the rulings of Angelo are quite perverse.
Nor do we see much of the elders.  Fathers are discussed by Ed Taft
although with some contradiction. Isabella is to be advised by a father
(and not her mother superior) and yet the Duke is criticized for his
attempts at being fatherly.  I do not think that there is a careful
distinction being made between his various strategies and his true
resolve.

I wonder what should be our reaction if this was not an imagined
reality?  I think that an insurrection  would be called for. Clearly
Angelo's administrator must go.

About the previous posting: Ever since the ancient matriarchs were
displaced by male shamans, women have heard shrilled "the children"
"the family".  They and those following knew and know that women are
sensitive to those cries, which they vocalize with effect. But my remark
is that first a woman must be a human person before she is a mother.
Nature provides for all manners of survival and for human beings it is
not merely biological.  Electra leaves espoused and life itself in order
to gather the dead bones of her brothers, for that is the right way for
a human being (and elephants) to behave. Isabella finds herself in a
situation of passive resistance and she behaves and expects her brother
to support her just like the followers of Gaundi, no matter the
sacrifice.

I have seen on television an interview of rape victims from a South
American internment.  Like them I suppose that Isabella could have been
taught to harden her mind and leave her true self in tact beyond the
event. But isn't it the point that such a thing was inconceivable to
her?

Florence Amit
 

©2011 Hardy Cook. All rights reserved.