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Home :: Archive :: 2001 :: March ::
Re: Weed Noted
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.0622  Thursday, 15 March 2001

[1]     From:   Syd Kasten <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 14 Mar 2001 23:44:27 +0200 (IST)
        Subj:   SHK 12.0561 Re: Weed Noted

[2]     From:   Takashi Kozuka <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 14 Mar 2001 20:56:39
        Subj:   Re: Weeds

[3]     From:   Sean Lawrence <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 14 Mar 2001 19:43:18 -0800
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.0606 Re: Ghosts and Weeds

[4]     From:   David Schalkwyk <
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        Date:   Thursday, 15 Mar 2001 11:16:38 +0200
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.0606 Re: Ghosts and Weeds


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Syd Kasten <
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Date:           Wednesday, 14 Mar 2001 23:44:27 +0200 (IST)
Subject: Re: Weed Noted
Comment:        SHK 12.0561 Re: Weed Noted

I find interesting that Stephanie Hughes comments on those killjoys, the
Puritans in reference to hedonistic practices. The two attitudes of
James I that have remained with me from 1st form history now relate to
this thread.

The first is his intention to rid England of "this noxious weed".  In
those innocent days (my schooldays, not early modern England) there was
no question that the weed was anything other than tobacco.  The fact
this plant earned the name "sotweed" implies that James' concern was not
limitted to the element of air pollution.

The second was his resolve that "they (the Puritans) shall conform or I
will harry them out of the land."  (I hope no one sees in his use of
"harry" a reference to Henry V's handling of his friends, countrymen and
princesses - a completely different thread).

Re psychoactive drugs: A botanist traveller by the name of Leonhard
Rauwolf brought to Europe and, I believe, England in the late sixteenth
century a plant from India called the snakeroot, known since then in
science as Rauwolfia Serpentina.  The Indians had used it for centuries
to treat psychosis.  It was used to effect over a few years in the
nineteen fifties for psychosis and hypertension until synthetics were
developed that worked more reliably with less side effects.  I wonder,
had Shakespeare known of the drug and its worth would he have been so
quick to "throw physic to the dogs"?.  Or did he know someone who had
been treated with it, developed a profound depression, committed suicide
- "should have died hereafter" - thereby justifying the comment given to
Macbeth.

Best wishes,
Syd Kasten

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Takashi Kozuka <
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Date:           Wednesday, 14 Mar 2001 20:56:39
Subject:        Re: Weeds

One SHAKESPERean has suggested to me that David Schalkwyk's posting on
the cannabis thread must have been intended as a joke. It may have been,
and I hope it was! Or is this another postmodernist reading? Ah, when I
was a kid, my life was simple -- I was chasing around after butterflies
(and sometimes lizards) all day long...

Takashi Kozuka

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Sean Lawrence <
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Date:           Wednesday, 14 Mar 2001 19:43:18 -0800
Subject: 12.0606 Re: Ghosts and Weeds
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.0606 Re: Ghosts and Weeds

Sam Small asks,

>I have always been troubled by this
>vision.  If we are to understand that the ghost has allegorical
>sub-text, then what does it really mean?  Macbeth and Richard the
>third's apparitions are personal manifestations of their guilt, but in
>Hamlet Shakespeare labours the point that around four other people have
>seen the same spook.  Does this mean that the ghost becomes a
>supernatural fact rather than a personal vision?  If so, that is a very
>different proposition.

Could it be calculated to frustrate our efforts to understand it?
Perhaps it is impossible to make into an object of our thought, and
hence of our mastery.

Cheers,
Se

 

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