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Home :: Archive :: 2001 :: July ::
Re: Arden Editions
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.1784  Wednesday, 18 July 2001

[1]     From:   Thomas Larque <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 17 Jul 2001 16:29:32 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.1768 Arden Editions

[2]     From:   Graham Hall <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 17 Jul 2001 16:59:57 -0000
        Subj:   Arden: not yet out of the wood.


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Thomas Larque <
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Date:           Tuesday, 17 Jul 2001 16:29:32 +0100
Subject: 12.1768 Arden Editions
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.1768 Arden Editions

> Can someone familiar with both the Arden and the New Arden series
> describe the relative merits and demerits of the two, assuming it is
> possible to so generalize?

Could someone also let us know which volumes have currently been
published in the Third Series? - which I think is the correct name for
the volumes most recently published.  I have a more or less complete
collection of what I think is called the Second Series Ardens, with a
few Third Series titles which had replaced the Second Series editions of
some plays before I bought them, but would like to get additional copies
of the latest Third Series editions where these have become available.

Thomas Larque.

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Graham Hall <
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Date:           Tuesday, 17 Jul 2001 16:59:57 -0000
Subject:        Arden: not yet out of the wood.

R. Schmeeckle asks for a comparison - rightly noting the difficulty of
doing so - between Arden and New Arden.

I declare my interests;

Most Britons - although not all - were brought up with Arden along with
the gin in their mother's milk. It was frequently the instrument of
torture for A levels/Highers. They therefore hold an ambivalent view. I
know a number of people involved with Series Three and would like to
remain friends!

Having said that, Series Three is not yet complete but enough texts are
available to allow for limited comparison. The previous series was
getting on a bit so a revised edition was worth the candle despite the
Arden name beginning to be held in less reverence than it once was. The
jury remains out on whether the editorial changes that have been made
are innovatory enough to catch the imagination and demands of the modern
reader. The feeling in the pubs and clubs of Stratford is that the board
has made a reasonable fist of it but could have been more adventurous.
Academic rigidity remains a strongly favourable point.

Damage has been sustained because of the shambles associated with
Arden-On-Line. Professor Duncan-Jones told me last month that they are
getting a grip on this. They need to because any future edition is going
to have to take account of the electronic revolution as its approach in
this medium will be crucial to the establishment of credibility.

I will continue to put it on my shelves - and not entirely out of a
misguided sense of loyalty and affection. It's worth the read - whatever
other purpose one intends to put it to - and is different enough from
"Arden Two" to merit the cost.

Kindly take all the above as the grossly personal opinion of a tale told
by an idiot etc.

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