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Home :: Archive :: 2001 :: January ::
Re: Playwrights and Pamphleteers
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.0207  Tuesday, 30 January 2001

From:           Stephanie Hughes <
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Date:           Friday, 26 Jan 2001 13:13:01 +0000
Subject: 12.0186 Playwrights and Pamphleteers
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.0186 Playwrights and Pamphleteers

>Someone who cares might argue that the Beatles weren't exactly
>disgraceful, and neither was John Bale.

You're right. I overstated the case. Although the Beatles endured their
portion of scorn before they won over their immense audience, and Bale
was so controversial that despite his stature as grand old man of the
English reformation, he had a hard time getting a job once it actually
took off.

>By the way, in addition to Shaw the list of significant playwrights who
>achieved noteworthy success on the basis of very modest formal
>educations includes Lope da Vega and Moliere.  What Keats and Dickens
>might have done had they been steered toward drama rather than poetry
>and fiction at the beginning of their careers has long seemed to me a
>beguiling speculation.

De Vega apprenticed to a very erudite Church official in his early
years, if memory serves, and Moliere attended the best Jesuit academy in
Paris before he turned actor. For such brilliant writers, these
backgrounds would certainly be sufficient to explain the kind of works
they wrote.

Shakespeare was writing when drama was King, Keats came of age when it
was poetry, and Dickens when it was the novel. Dickens was very drawn to
the theater. Perhaps someone else will recall if he actually wrote any

Stephanie Hughes

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