2000

Re: Hebrew and Languages

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 11.1152  Monday, 5 June 2000.

From:           William Sutton <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Friday, 2 Jun 2000 09:59:47 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: 11.1131 Re: Hebrew and Languages
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1131 Re: Hebrew and Languages

Hi, Everyone,

I love speculating about Sh.'s polyglot personalities.  Do you think he
knew any Welsh or Gaelic or Russian or my favourite, Dutch? His use of
compound words makes my ears tingle as the Dutch practically invented
it.  The Dutch connections of Sh. lifestory are numerous after all.

The Hebrew connection I think about is that the Vautrollier's print shop
was licensed to publish in that language, as well as Greek, Latin and
English. (Dave Kathman please agree or correct the details, please).  If
it was printed then there were interested readers.  How will this
connection be satisfied though I ask, Florence?

And they were Belgian immigrants which gives me motivation to speculate
on that delightful franglais, Sophie noted.

I live in a polyglot surroundings and am often surprised by the
connections with people despite language.

I remember attending Wars of the Roses in Dutch where a scholar spoke
beforehand to outline the history and the settings. He spoke in Dutch
and one comment he made stays with me.  'Don't forget that in Sh.'s time
Dutch was already a language whilst English was a collection of backward
dialects.'

Oh how they laughed. But the truth is there. Hebrew on the other hand
had a four thousand year history relativating the comment. Was Chinese
even known? Any instances of chinese in England then? The Japanese had
sent someone to Rome at the same period I seem to recollect because of
the Jesuits?

Hope I'm not just waffling,
W.

Re: James and Elizabeth

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 11.1151  Monday, 5 June 2000.

[1]     From:   Florence Amit <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Friday, 02 Jun 2000 17:45:35 +0000
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1139 Re: James and Elizabeth

[2]     From:   Abigail Quart <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Friday, 2 Jun 2000 12:36:31 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1139 Re: James and Elizabeth


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Florence Amit <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Friday, 02 Jun 2000 17:45:35 +0000
Subject: 11.1139 Re: James and Elizabeth
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1139 Re: James and Elizabeth

To Marilyn Bonomi,

I shall write you off line. I do not feel much like apologizing for no
good reason.

He-bona like Dona-bella are words for medicines that have connotations
beyond the pharmacy. Please reject this as it pleases you. I no longer
will respond on line to the thread.

Florence Amit

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Abigail Quart <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Friday, 2 Jun 2000 12:36:31 -0400
Subject: 11.1139 Re: James and Elizabeth
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1139 Re: James and Elizabeth

>What Abigail Quart writes here is lovely propaganda, but atrocious
 "history."

I suggested that the man who became King James I was originally a human
child and human children fantasize. Nobody thinks it "atrocious" when
Little Orphan Annie sings "Tomorrow" unless she can't sing.

>People were hardly as pusillanimous in the seventeenth century as Ms.
>Quart suggests.

During Elizabeth's reign, a popular playwright was jailed and tortured
for some religious opinions he had written in college. A man who wrote a
flyer criticizing a proposed  marriage for Elizabeth got his writing
hand removed.  And that was a monarch they knew. Prudence is not
cowardice.

>-and James's passion for the mother who had abandoned him
> as an infant,

Running for her life, wasn't she?

>ignored him as an adult

He was born in 1566. She was executed in 1587 when he was 21.  Every
minute that he was an adult, she was dead.

>sweetly offered to "allow"
>him to "share" the English throne to which she had not a snowball's hope
>in hell of claim,

"sweetly?" Mary's hopes or delusions were not my subject.

 >is well-documented. He had much more "love" (if you
>can call it that)

I persist in believing that human beings have human feelings and human
motives. Can't help it. That thing he did in 1612, moving his mother's
bones to Westminster, to a tomb opposite and as sumptuous as
Elizabeth's, was my idea of a clue.

>for the old lady who had her head. And that
>"Protestant" male king had a Catholic mother, and a Catholic Queen.

Okay, I obviously wasn't clear enough. My position is that
If-Paris-is-worth-a-mass-then-London-is-worth-a-Bible James was a
political Protestant and a personal Catholic. His choice was simple: Be
Protestant, be alive, be king of two countries, and your mother is a
murdering whore OR be Catholic, be de-throned, be dead, but your mother
is a martyred Queen. You choose.

>As
>well as a number of homosexual favorites on whom he made no scruple of
>doting publicly, before homosexuality was accorded its modern status in
>polite society.

Well, well, I guess history really is nothing more than old gossip
published in thick books.

Since James had children, who he giggled with meant what? Anger at the
preferential treatment received by his favorites came later and wouldn't
have been an issue in how he was perceived in the beginning, would it?

But interesting how you managed to drag it in.

Re: Isabella's Chastity

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 11.1149  Monday, 5 June 2000.

[1]     From:   Ed Taft <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Friday, 02 Jun 2000 11:30:20 -0400 (EDT)
        Subj:   Isabella's Chastity

[2]     From:   Marilyn A. Bonomi <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Friday, 2 Jun 2000 12:29:36 -0400
        Subj:   Shakespeare and Mothers

[3]     From:   Hardy M. Cook <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Monday, June 05, 2000
        Subj:   Re: Isabella's Chastity


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Ed Taft <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Friday, 02 Jun 2000 11:30:20 -0400 (EDT)
Subject:        Isabella's Chastity

To David Bishop. Nothing is inarguable unless one or more of the
participants decides that his or her position is dogma.  There's a lot
more to say about MM, but if this is the end of the discussion, so be
it.

--Ed Taft

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Marilyn A. Bonomi <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Friday, 2 Jun 2000 12:29:36 -0400
Subject: Mothers (was Re: SHK 11.1143 Re: Isabella's
Comment:        Shakespeare and Mothers (was Re: SHK 11.1143 Re: Isabella's
Chastity)

Florence Amit perceptively observes:

"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."

If I might, I'd like to spin off from this thread a new one.  How does
Shakespeare treat women as mothers?  Two who come immediately to mind
are Lady Cap. and Hermione.

The former is one of the more self-absorbed of Shakespeare's mothers,
mocking her husband ("A crutch, a crutch!  Why call you for a sword?")
and urging her daughter to marry "now" despite Lord Capulet's desire to
postpone such a wedding (and promoting Paris as wealthy and highly
placed).  My students find her grief at Juliet's apparent death
puzzling, given that only virtual moments before she's said "I would the
fool were married to her grave."

The latter's cause is her own honor, a human person before she is a
mother, though she certainly loves her children.   "I have that
honorable grief which burns worse than tears drown"-it is her own
integrity, which only by extension covers the children, that she
protests here.

Both the above statements are simplistic, I know-I throw them on the
metaphorical table only to spark debate on the general topic of
Shakespeare's mothers.

Marilyn A. Bonomi

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Hardy M. Cook <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Monday, June 05, 2000
Subject:        Re: Isabella's Chastity

Theodora A. Jankowski has an interesting article in *Shakespeare
Studies* (26: 218-255), in which she considers "the position occupied by
adult virgin women as a queer space within the early modern Protestant
sex/gender system." She uses "the term 'queer' to define not only
varieties of nonheterosexual activity, but also to define
nonreproductive heterosexual activity and nonsexual erotic activity
(218)" Janowski coins the term "queer virgin," which she applies to
Isabella of *Measure for Measure* and Lady Happy of *The Convent of
Pleasures."

Re: Iago

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 11.1150  Monday, 5 June 2000.

[1]     From:   Ed Taft <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Friday, 02 Jun 2000 11:51:34 -0400 (EDT)
        Subj:   Iago

[2]     From:   Sean Lawrence <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Friday, 02 Jun 2000 10:37:39 -0700
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1147 Q: Iago

[3]     From:   Brian Haylett <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Friday, 2 Jun 2000 20:40:20 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1147 Q: Iago

[4]     From:   Kevin De Ornellas <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Friday, 02 Jun 2000 20:22:08 GMT
        Subj:   Othello and Bible

[5]     From:   Clifford Stetner <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Friday, 2 Jun 2000 17:07:34 -0400
        Subj:   RE: SHK 11.1147 Q: Iago

[6]     From:   Hugh Grady <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Friday, 2 Jun 2000 17:56:22 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1147 Q: Iago

[7]     From:   Marti Markus <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Friday, 02 Jun 2000 23:51:39 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1147 Q: Iago


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Ed Taft <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Friday, 02 Jun 2000 11:51:34 -0400 (EDT)
Subject:        Iago

Sophie Masson engages in some good thinking when she asks if Iago's "I
am not what I am" echoes Yaweh's "I am that am." Sure, in a diabolical
way. What if we think of the play Othello as a redoing of the fall. If
so, Othello = Adam, Desdemona = Eve, and Iago = Guess Who?  This
approach to Othello is, I think, an interesting one because in
Shakespeare's retelling of this myth, the "cause of all our woe" is not
Eve (Desdemona), but Adam (Othello). In other words, Shakespeare
presents a "feminist" version of the fall.

--Ed Taft

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Sean Lawrence <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Friday, 02 Jun 2000 10:37:39 -0700
Subject: 11.1147 Q: Iago
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1147 Q: Iago

The statement "I am what I am" actually occurs only in the KJV, and it's
St. Paul describing himself, not Yahweh describing himself (1Corinthians
15.10).  The similar but different phrase "I am that I am" occurs in the
Geneva Bible, the Thomas Matthew New Testament, the Coverdale Bible, the
Tyndale NT, and the Great Bible in this place.  It is also the phrase in
the KJV Exodus 3.14, as well as that of the Great Bible, The Bishops'
Bible, and the Geneva Bible.

In other words, "I am what I am", is not spoken by Yahweh anywhere in
the Renaissance scriptures.  Moreover, the phrase "I am what I am" from
the New Testament is anachronistic to Othello, if we assume conventional
dating (King James Version 1611; Othello 1604).

If I may speculate a bit, I think that this is one of those phrases,
like "Fair is foul and foul is fair" that serve to quickly indicate the
utter perversity of the character speaking, not so much by travestying
the scriptures as by inverting conventional binaries.  God's statement
in Exodus indicates that he doesn't require a name to subsist in
himself, that he is a signifier long before being a signified; Iago
assumes a name, but only in order to defy it, promulgating false
signifiers.

There is, in this regard, another possible intertext:  in Leonard and
Thomas Digges's Stratioticos, an ancient is described as loyal and
honest, just as Iago is described repeatedly in the play.  He is,
however, neither of these things, and there's a certain metadramatic gap
between the role he plays and what he actually is.

Cheers,
Se


Re: Use of Foreign Words

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 11.1148  Friday, 2 June 2000.

From:           Sophie Masson <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Friday, 2 Jun 2000 15:32:33 +1000
Subject: 11.1135 Shakespeare's Use of Foreign Words
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1135 Shakespeare's Use of Foreign Words

I remember reading that John Florio, Southampton's tutor, wrote a couple
of 'teach-yourself-Italian' books, which S. quite probably saw. Will's
use of French, especially, to me, as a native French speaker, is very
interesting,: the scene in Henry V, for example, between Kate and her
lady in waiting is the first printed example I know of Franglais, in a
way that can be enjoyed by both French and English speakers but
especially those bilingual ones like me who regularly used Franglais at
home, to the bemusement of all who heard us!

Sophie Masson

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