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Home :: Archive :: 2000 :: June ::
Re: Fathers & Mothers
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 11.1186  Thursday, 8 June 2000.

[1]     From:   Dana Shilling <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 7 Jun 2000 11:02:59 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1176 Re: Fathers and Mothers

[2]     From:   Larry Weiss <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 07 Jun 2000 14:00:56 -0400
        Subj:   Re: Fathers & Mothers


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Dana Shilling <
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Date:           Wednesday, 7 Jun 2000 11:02:59 -0400
Subject: 11.1176 Re: Fathers and Mothers
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1176 Re: Fathers and Mothers

 Sophie Masson discusses the question of absent/dead fathers in
Arthurian romance vs. dead mothers in Shakespeare.

I'd say it's a matter of practical stagecraft. Whatever the age of male
actors playing female roles, an actor playing a minor female role would
probably have to play several male roles as well. There might not have
been time for "Hero's/Heroine's Mother" to run off, change out of the
dress into male costume, and run back on in time to be Third Knight,
Messenger, Attendant Lord Swelling Procession, etc. If the mother isn't
strictly needed, it's easier to kill her off. You might call this the
presumption of Innogence.

Dana

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Larry Weiss <
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Date:           Wednesday, 07 Jun 2000 14:00:56 -0400
Subject:        Re: Fathers & Mothers

Analisa Castaldo wonders why there are so many absent mothers.  Nothing
insidious here, I think.  Shakespeare had at most five actors able to
carry female parts, so if one parent had to be sacrificed it made
practical sense to make it the mother.  This is one of the reasons I
find Volumnia is so interesting.
 

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