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Home :: Archive :: 2001 :: July ::
Re: "What's in a name?"
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.1720  Monday, 9 July 2001

[1]     From:   Robin Hamilton <
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        Date:   Sunday, 8 Jul 2001 16:30:12 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.1710 Re: "What's in a name?"

[2]     From:   Takashi Kozuka <
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        Date:   Sunday, 08 Jul 2001 15:35:22
        Subj:   Re: "What's in a name?"

[3]     From:   Rainbow Saari <
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        Date:   Monday, 9 Jul 2001 10:45:48 +1200
        Subj:   Re: What's in a name

[4]     From:   Andrew W. White <
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        Date:   Sunday, 8 Jul 2001 19:29:35 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.1710 Re: "What's in a name?"

[5]     From:   Robin Hamilton <
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        Date:   Monday, 9 Jul 2001 02:18:27 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.1710 Re: "What's in a name?"

[6]     From:   Stuart Taylor <
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        Date:   Sunday, 8 Jul 2001 23:20:44 -0400 (EDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.1710 Re: "What's in a name?"

[7]     From:   Peter Groves <
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        Date:   Monday, 09 Jul 2001 13:50:48 +1000
        Subj:   RE: SHK 12.1710 Re: "What's in a name?"


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Robin Hamilton <
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Date:           Sunday, 8 Jul 2001 16:30:12 +0100
Subject: 12.1710 Re: "What's in a name?"
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.1710 Re: "What's in a name?"

> From:           Clifford Stetner <
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> I doubt that any deconstructionist ever said anything was meaningless.
> As Takashi Kozuka points out, it is one thing to call attention to the
> arbitrariness of the signifier/signified relation, and another to decide
> what to do with it.

Um.  What Takashi Kozuka said was: 'deconstruction questions
("deconstructs") the fixed bond between a name ("signifier") and a
substance ("signified").'

"the arbitrariness of the signifier/signified relation" is straight from
Saussure, and thus thoroughly pre-de-constructionist.  Indeed, it can be
carried back (via the Nomanalist/Realist controversy in the Middle Ages)
at least to Plato.

Deconstruction is a different kettle of snakes.

Robin Hamilton

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Takashi Kozuka <
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Date:           Sunday, 08 Jul 2001 15:35:22
Subject:        Re: "What's in a name?"

Among many other books I would like to recommend Jonathan Culler's On
Deconstruction: Theory and Criticism after Structuralism (1982). His
book is useful especially when we practice deconstruction (as well as
study it as a theory).

Happy reading!

Takashi Kozuka

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Rainbow Saari <
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Date:           Monday, 9 Jul 2001 10:45:48 +1200
Subject:        Re: What's in a name

Karen  asks about the rose/vagina connection. Helkiah Crooke in his book
on anatomy 'Microcosmographia', ( Lonon: W.Jaggard, 1615), in
describing the female physical response to sexual stimuli, notes " the
consequent revealing of the 'many round folds', the 'many involutions
and pleates, joyned together in the manner of Rose leaves before they
bee fully spread or rype...', in the forepart of the vulva. " (Quoted
from Martin Green's The Labyrinth of Shakespeare's Sonnets, p 75) My
guess is he was not the first to make a comparison between rose and
vulva.

I think it possible that Shakespeare may be playing on this image of
rose as female reproductive organs/genitalia in A Midsummer Night's
Dream (1.1) when Theseus tells Hermia she must choose between a marriage
to Demetrius or life in a nunnery;

To live a barren sister all your life,
Chanting faint hymns to the cold fruitless moon.
Thrice -blessed they that master so their blood
To undergo such maiden pilgrimage;
But earthlier happy is the rose distill'd
Than that which withering on the virgin thorn
Grows, lives and dies in single blessedness.

As for Shakespeare identifying " young men just as often, or more often,
with roses, than he does women",  one reason he does this, I believe, is
that the probable pronunciation of his patron's surname, ( Henry
Wriothesley ) was then ' Rose-ly'. Green ( p. 87), points out this
conclusion was arrived at  in 1918 by Professor Martha Hale Shackford,
and Professor Charlton Hinman, in 1937, likewise surmised. Green and I
agree that Shakespeare wrote of  Wriothesley, particularly in his
Sonnets, as his 'Rose'.

Ira's query on

"What's in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other word would smell as sweet."

Q 1 has 'name', Q 2 and Folio have 'word'.  Both 'name' and 'word' can
be said to be correct. I prefer 'word' .

All the best,
Rainbow

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Andrew W. White <
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Date:           Sunday, 8 Jul 2001 19:29:35 -0400
Subject: 12.1710 Re: "What's in a name?"
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.1710 Re: "What's in a name?"

Karen Peterson-Kranz writes:

>Quart notes that a rose
> Is "rose" really a synonym for female genitalia?

Um, my classmates in college (of both sexes) seemed to get a great kick
out of the 'climax' to the _Romance of the Rose_ -- don't have a copy
handy, but perhaps someone could find us an example of this kind of
imagery.

Cheers,

Andy White

[5]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Robin Hamilton <
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Date:           Monday, 9 Jul 2001 02:18:27 +0100
Subject: 12.1710 Re: "What's in a name?"
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.1710 Re: "What's in a name?"

>From:           Karen Peterson-Kranz <
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>Is "rose" really a synonym for female genitalia?  I missed that one
>somehow (I'm not being sarcastic!  I'm legitimately wondering!).  I
>always thought it was more the idea of a "flower" in a more general
>sense.

There's probably a better case to be made for the rose (in English,
certainly, and probably more broadly on the Continent) as a symbol of
general femininity.  As in the medieval quatrain:

Al nigt by the rose, rose,
Al nigt bi the rose I lay.
Darf ich nougt the rose stele
And yet ich bar the flour away.

Here, the rose seems to symbolise the total female, and the flower her
virginity.

Robin Hamilton

[6]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Stuart Taylor <
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Date:           Sunday, 8 Jul 2001 23:20:44 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: 12.1710 Re: "What's in a name?"
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.1710 Re: "What's in a name?"

More than 2 weeks ago, I called into question the assumed omnipotence of
written evidence (or proof) in discussing questions such as whether or
not the word Peter is likely to have suggested penis to an Elizabethan
audience watching R&J.

In response, Mike Jensen has repeatedly asserted his appeal to authority
(books, peers, and 'every scholar he knows.)  Now he takes the positions
of cheerleader and referee.  It seems to me that the only 'level to
which he will not go' is an ad rem argument.  Given his rigid reliance
on "textbooks" and "textual precedent" one might wonder, does this
fellow kiss by the book?

On the other hand, Robin Hamilton has kept his eye on the debate, for
which I am grateful.  He writes, "I do find, however, rather a muddle
between the diachronic and the synchronic in Stuart Taylor's posts."
The complicated ways that "the here and now" and "the past" are related
to each other are the subject of unresolved discourses in several fields
of inquiry.  I do not wish to invoke those now.  It was my impression
that "synchronic" and "diachronic" were descriptors of perspectives, not
entities in and of themselves, and not qualities of linguistic reality.
As perspectives, they are not mutually exclusive.

In a prior post, I asked (by way of accepting Mr. Hamilton

 

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