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Home :: Archive :: 2001 :: March ::
Re: Authorial Intention
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.0643  Friday, 16 March 2001

From:           Clifford Stetner <
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Date:           Friday, 16 Mar 2001 00:15:37 -0500
Subject: 12.0546 Re: Authorial Intention
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.0546 Re: Authorial Intention

R. A. Cantrell asks:

>Is the time spent discussing theory well spent?

I certainly think so.  "Theory" today is the heir apparent to western
metaphysics and, in addition to the authorities you cite, involves the
study of all the great thinkers from Nietzsche and Hegel back.  As I
(like Chris Stroffolino) came to the study of Shakespeare and literature
through a back door, namely philosophy, the acknowledgement that the
study of literature inevitably leads to the study of meaning and
language and ultimately to metaphysics lets me have my cake and eat it
too.

I hardly need to point out the paradox that the assertion that time
spent in theory is not well spent is itself theory.  While students of
Shakespeare are free to ignore this paradox, "Shakespeare scholars,"
those of us pursuing doctorate degrees are not.  We are obliged to place
our dissertations into the context of Shakespeare studies past and
present, and this makes the "fall into theory" inescapable.

Clifford Stetner
CUNY
http://phoenix.liu.edu/~cstetner/cds.html
 

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