Make a Donation

Consider making a donation to support SHAKSPER.

Subscribe to Our Feeds

Current Postings RSS

Announcements RSS

Home :: Archive :: 2001 :: November ::
Re: R & J and the TOPS Survey
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.2637  Wednesday, 21 November 2001

[1]     From:   Mari Bonomi <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Tuesday, 20 Nov 2001 10:44:57 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.2626 Re: MND Tops Survey

[2]     From:   Mike Jensen <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Tuesday, 20 Nov 2001 10:25:40 -0800
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.2626 Re: MND Tops Survey

[3]     From:   Larry Weiss <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Tuesday, 20 Nov 2001 14:59:00 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.2626 Re: MND Tops Survey

[4]     From:   Stuart Manger <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Wednesday, 21 Nov 2001 08:18:20 +0000
        Subj:   R & J and the TOPS Survey


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Mari Bonomi <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Tuesday, 20 Nov 2001 10:44:57 -0500
Subject: 12.2626 Re: MND Tops Survey
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.2626 Re: MND Tops Survey

ACK!! I thought VERONA but typed Venice!

Apologies to all; the error does not vitiate the point I was trying to
make, however.

Mari Bonomi

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Mike Jensen <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Tuesday, 20 Nov 2001 10:25:40 -0800
Subject: 12.2626 Re: MND Tops Survey
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.2626 Re: MND Tops Survey

For the record, and not to nit-pick Judy Lewis, I'm sure she made a typo
when she wrote that *R&J* has 3 female roles, when there are, of course,
4.  As a great transposer of keys on a keyboard, probably because I'm
dyslexic, I can easily understand how this happens.

Mike Jensen

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Larry Weiss <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Tuesday, 20 Nov 2001 14:59:00 -0500
Subject: 12.2626 Re: MND Tops Survey
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.2626 Re: MND Tops Survey

Those who argue that the play is really about the ill effects of feuding
ought to consider that the feud has pretty much petered out by the time
the play starts.  The only character who takes it seriously is Tybalt.
For the servants it is an occasion for fun and exercise, for everyone
else it is in the background with no immediate impact.  I suppose it is
a bit of intended irony that the tragedy of R&J could have been avoided
if the kids had just fessed up to their parents without making such a
melodrama about the embers of a remembered feud.

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Stuart Manger <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Wednesday, 21 Nov 2001 08:18:20 +0000
Subject:        R & J and the TOPS Survey

Several correspondents have suggested, or seemed to suggest, that from a
pragmatic point of view R&J is not as high in the poll as MND because
there are fewer female roles, and in mixed classes / stage companies,
this would exclude too many for it to be as acceptable as 'Charlie
Brown' or 'Rumours'.

On that basis, how many Shakespeare plays are destined to disappear from
school classrooms and stages? Here are a random sample off the top of my
head:

Henry V - 3 women, two of which speak in pidgin French / English for
        comic and therefore ridiculing purposes, and the English voice
        disappears after two scenes
Julius Caesar: two women
Othello - four women
King Lear - three women
Hamlet - three women
                        etc etc etc.

Even on that random basis, it is surely clear that Shakespeare's company
rarely stretched to more than three or four women's roles, so that if
the 'equality of opportunity test' were to be applied, we might
confidently assume that only MND is likely to survive in schoolrooms
nationwide in the USA in about ten years time, and the serious job of
exposing and exploring texts on a national basis will be left to adult
professional companies.

Are American educationalists at all alarmed by this possible scenario?
I can see the problem might well come in terms of public performance IF
the major criterion for deciding what is culturally efficacious becomes
'have we got enough roles for the women? So if we want Shakespeare, then
it's got to be MND or Macbeth or A & C.'

On that basis, I can genuinely see the day not very far distant when
Shakespeare is either never or very, very rarely performed in US high
schools - possibly even colleges - at all.

Is my concern misplaced?

Stuart Manger

_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, 
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
The S H A K S P E R Webpage <http://ws.bowiestate.edu>

DISCLAIMER: Although SHAKSPER is a moderated discussion list, the
opinions expressed on it are the sole property of the poster, and the
editor assumes no responsibility for them.
 

©2011 Hardy Cook. All rights reserved.