2002

Re: Accents English

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.0161  Thursday, 24 January 2002

[1]     From:   Andy White <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 10:32:45 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.0149 Re: Accents English

[2]     From:   Mike Jensen <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 09:11:27 -0800
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.0149 Re: Accents English


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Andy White <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 10:32:45 -0500
Subject: 13.0149 Re: Accents English
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.0149 Re: Accents English

At the risk of undermining the seriousness of this thread, I'd like to
refer one and all to an early sequence in "Hard Day's Night," in which
Wilford Bramley (Paul's Grandfather -- "very clean" but "a real mixer")
manages to get the Beatles' managers into an argument over whether one
of them is _intentionally_ taller than the other.  It's a priceless
routine, and one that points up the ridiculousness of taking excessive
pride/offense at the stuff one is born into.

Andy White

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Mike Jensen <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 09:11:27 -0800
Subject: 13.0149 Re: Accents English
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.0149 Re: Accents English

Mr. Wonder, er, Weiss, thinks he knows what I mean better than I do.

>when you go to such lengths to emphasize the difference it is not
>irrational for your audience to conclude that you, at least,
>think it is somehow more laudable to be tall than short.

Yes it is.  I do not, and would not believe that, so they would be
wrong.  A smart person would not assume without considering alternate
possibilities.  For me, it would only mean that I am telling all the
people trying to keep me down that I won't stay down, and they are going
to have to deal with it.

>Likewise, when you point out that Will is short and add "not that there's
>anything
>wrong with that" you mean the opposite of what you are saying.

How dare you tell me what I mean?  I have advantages that Will doesn't.
When we go to second hand bookstores together I often fetch things for
him from the top shelf.  And Will has advantages too.  I have go get on
my knees to see the bottom shelf, and he does not.  In the future please
allow me to tell you what I mean!  Do not accuse me of sharing your
bigotry.

>And Karen Peterson takes me to task on stylistic grounds-I did not
>pepper my submission with enough limiting modifiers, like "some."   I
>did not say "all" either.  I never do-well, hardly ever.

You also didn't deny that she is right.  The lack of *some* in your post
was a big grammatical lack.  If you don't believe the statements you
made are true of all women, gay, and black people, say so clearly,
otherwise don't try to hide behind plausible deniability and accusations
that I am a secret bigot.

Mike Jensen

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Re: The Real R&J

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.0160  Thursday, 24 January 2002

[1]     From:   Richard Burt <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 09:53:10 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.0154 Will the Real R+J Please Stand Up?

[2]     From:   Paul Franssen <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 16:21:07 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.0154 Will the Real R+J Please Stand Up?

[3]     From:   Mary Jane Miller <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 10:58:08 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.0154 Will the Real R+J Please Stand Up?

[4]     From:   Markus Marti <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 18:12:35 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.0154 Will the Real R+J Please Stand Up?

[5]     From:   John D. Cox <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 11:26:29 -0500
        Subj:   Fatal Love Affairs

[6]     From:   Alan Pierpoint <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Thursday, 24 Jan 2002 00:25:40 EST
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.0154 Will the Real R+J Please Stand Up?


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Richard Burt <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 09:53:10 -0500
Subject: 13.0154 Will the Real R+J Please Stand Up?
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.0154 Will the Real R+J Please Stand Up?

Well, Shakespeare used Brooke's poem, which borrowed from the French
(Boaistuau) which borrowed from the Italian versions (Masuccio, da
Porto, Bandello) which borrowed from a 5th century A.D. version by
Xenophon of Ephesus.

Go to http://www.towson.edu/~quick/romeoandjuliet/sources.htm for full
details.

Best,
Richard

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Paul Franssen <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 16:21:07 +0100
Subject: 13.0154 Will the Real R+J Please Stand Up?
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.0154 Will the Real R+J Please Stand Up?

Robert Peters asks for stories involving lovers from enemy families
before Romeo and Juliet. Well, of course there are the sources that
Shakespeare may have used, from Bandello to Painter and Brooke; but
apart from that, the classical story of Pyramus and Thisbe (Ovid's
*Metamorphoses*) springs to mind.

Paul Franssen
Department of English
Utrecht University
The Netherlands

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Mary Jane Miller <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 10:58:08 -0500
Subject: 13.0154 Will the Real R+J Please Stand Up?
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.0154 Will the Real R+J Please Stand Up?

And all of us answered Pyramus and Thisbe

Mary Jane

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Markus Marti <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 18:12:35 +0100
Subject: 13.0154 Will the Real R+J Please Stand Up?
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.0154 Will the Real R+J Please Stand Up?

> Are there Romeo and Juliet kind of texts (boy and girl from enemy camps
> fall fatally in love with each other) written before Shakespeare's Romeo
> and Juliet?
>
> Robert

There is of course "Pyramus and Thisbe" by signore Naso, and all the
usual sources from all around Europe (Masuccio, Luigi da Porto,
Bandello, Boaistuau, Brookes, Painter, cf.
http://www.unibas.ch/shine/linkstragromeowf.html#sources) and Mr.
Chaucer's Troilus and Cressida (Criseyde).

I have just re-checked the links on my website, but it seems that most
of these texts are still not available on-line.

Markus Marti
http://www.unibas.ch/shine/html

[5]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           John D. Cox <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 11:26:29 -0500
Subject:        Fatal Love Affairs

Robert Peters asks about dramatized stories of fatal love affairs before
*Romeo and Juliet*, and the first one that comes to mind is *Pyramus and
Thisbe* in *A Midsummer Night's Dream*.  It's not clear whether MND
comes before R&J or the other way around, but it IS clear that R&J is
the brilliantly serious version of the story that is parodied with
merciless hilarity in *Pyramus and Thisbe*.

John Cox
Hope College

[6]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Alan Pierpoint <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Thursday, 24 Jan 2002 00:25:40 EST
Subject: 13.0154 Will the Real R+J Please Stand Up?
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.0154 Will the Real R+J Please Stand Up?

How about Antigone and Haimon?   -Alan Pierpoint

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Re: Criticism

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.0158  Wednesday, 23 January 2002

[1]     From:   Ben Fisler <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 22 Jan 2002 19:44:12 EST
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.0148 Re: Criticism

[2]     From:   Brian Willis <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 22 Jan 2002 17:56:55 -0800 (PST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.0148 Re: Criticism


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Ben Fisler <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 22 Jan 2002 19:44:12 EST
Subject: 13.0148 Re: Criticism
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.0148 Re: Criticism

Don,

Your objection seems unaware of the context of my post, which was in no
way intended to establish the absolute correct interpretation of Hamlet,
merely to point out that placing criticism in a hierarchy implies that
all interpretations are fundamentally the same.  The author I was
responding to saw Hamlet in a certain way (as a powerful, charming,
energetic figure), and failed to acknowledge that not all readings of
the character would expect those qualities.  Quite the contrary, some
readings would demand the opposite.  That was all I was arguing.  I
provided the theory of humours (blood, phlegm, etc) as understood by the
Elizabethan/Jacobean worldview as simply one example of a contrary
reading.  And as I said, contextualism is not the only way to read a
play.  If you found the terminology ambiguous, then I agree, it
certainly is, and if I were trying to explain the theory in depth, I
would provide more specific examples.  But to do that, I would need to
explain contextualism in much greater depth and provide textual
references in Hamlet and propose performance strategies based on that
analysis, and I saw no reason to do so in the context of that particular
reply.

>Ben Fisler denies the idea that Hamlet should be "powerful,
>intelligent,
>funny, tragic and charismatic," and says instead that "[i]f you
>look at
>the humour theory, you'll find that not only should Hamlet not be
>any of
>these things, he should in fact be melancholic, weak, sadly
>funny, and
>inconsistent."

Incidentally, this reading misreads me.  I never rejected anything
except the positivism of the original post.  I enjoy productions where
Hamlet is funny and charismatic.  But it's extremely dangerous to assume
that this is the only "right" way to interpret the role.

Yours,
Ben

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Brian Willis <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 22 Jan 2002 17:56:55 -0800 (PST)
Subject: 13.0148 Re: Criticism
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.0148 Re: Criticism

A few things on this thread:

The idea of Hamlet being "powerful, intelligent, funny, tragic and
charismatic" was actually my attempt to use words that critics used to
describe Beale's effect on them. It didn't necessarily mean that his
Hamlet had power, even though it has spiraled into a discussion of that.

As for Hamlet's superiority in fencing, Horatio and even Osric acclaim
Laertes as the much better fighter in V. ii. It is entirely possible
that Laertes does find his treachery against his conscience and, like
Hamlet, hesitates to hit him with the poisoned blade.  His confession is
a reflection of his growing uneasiness with his act of revenge.

Tying into both of those points, I will bring up a specific example of
this in the Beale performance.  Beale's Hamlet was held back by his
beliefs. Hence, his conscience made him a coward by refusing to allow
him to revenge, a decidedly anti-Christian concept.  The abundance of
crosses and the crucifixes the characters wore made this an always
apparent concept.  It became obvious throughout the evening that those
morals and values were shallow, bankrupt or non-existent with the other
characters in Denmark. In the final scene, Laertes was also implied as
having a heavy conscience. Hamlet's fatal wound occurred entirely by
accident when his little finger hit the point of Laertes's sword.
Enraged and unaware of the poison, Beale gained possession of Laertes's
sword and slashed him with it. Seeing himself steeped in sin, or perhaps
finally aware that he was doomed anyways, Beale killed Claudius, when
Claudius dared him to do it. Only Horatio was able to stop Beale's
Hamlet from drinking the poisoned chalice and committing suicide.
Hamlet was perhaps a fully dignified and active human being who is
everything one could hope for in a ruler.  The tragedy was that his
deeply moral and Christian concept of revenge as mortal sin forbade him
from cleansing the corruption from Denmark. Murder, decadence and
shallowness were practically more powerful than goodness. Nice guys
finish last. It made for a powerful, enlightening and deeply tragic
night for me.

Lastly, Charles Weinstein is clearly one of a long line of people who
prefer the old ways over new methods. There is nothing wrong with that
at all.  Remember though that at one time people hated Olivier's style
as unclassical and preferred older styles. Olivier confesses this in his
autobiography.  He wanted a more natural style of speaking verse. A
great example is his Romeo with Gielgud's. Olivier was not seen as a
romantic figure (sounds like Weinstein's description of Beale) while
Gielgud's concurrent interpretation was preferred for its more lyrical
speaking of the verse. Some people nowadays, unfortunately, would think
that Gielgud's delivery is too artificial. I like both actors but
realize that they are attached to two different ideas of acting.  That
is why they clashed sometimes and both revealed their respect but
disapproval of the other's approach to acting.

Every generation overthrows the previous a little bit (God, I hope I'm
not sounding like Harold Bloom).  While Marlon Brando was an oddity then
in 1954's A Streetcar Named Desire, method acting for instance is now
preferred by actors as a style. I don't say that I dislike classical
acting styles. Several people still use them and I often find they make
certain performances work better. It's just that film for instance has
forced a more natural and toned down style of acting. Olivier's Richard
III and more obviously his Othello for the National did not translate
too well to the small or silver screens for some people. Both, not
surprisingly, post date Brando's breakthrough onto the screen. It's a
matter of taste. Both can work. Take it for what it is. But don't get
personal. Describe intelligently and rationally why that style did or
did not fit the role.  It strengthens your argument and doesn't turn
everyone off to your writing.

Brian Willis

_______________________________________________________________
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Re: Hamlet (Once More)

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.0159  Thursday, 24 January 2002

[1]     From:   Andy White <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 22 Jan 2002 21:20:09 -0500
        Subj:   Hamlet (Once More)

[2]     From:   Don Bloom <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 16:09:31 -0600
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.0143 Hamlet (Once More)


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Andy White <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 22 Jan 2002 21:20:09 -0500
Subject:        Hamlet (Once More)

Ed Taft seems to think that once the Ghost's witness is proven, "Hamlet
should immediately effect revenge and the play should be over."

Well, yes, and Hamlet would readily acknowledge this too, _except_:

1. Hamlet might prefer to take his revenge at a time when he is unlikely
to be a) deterred by courtiers defending Claudius' person, or b) killed
in the process himself.  As "To be or not to be" clearly indicates, he
isn't too keen on an act of revenge that would send him too early to his
own death.

2. The overarching conceit of the play, a conceit shared by many (if not
all) in Shakespeare's audience, is that the state of one's soul at death
determines one's fate in the next life.  The Ghost bears witness to the
possibility that a basically good soul can be forced to suffer Purgatory
needlessly if she/he is murdered with "no shriving time allowed."

It's not just King Hamlet's murder that's at issue here, it's the added
fact that he is forced to suffer Purgatory unjustly.  Revenge, in this
case, is not complete by merely killing Claudius' body; Claudius' _soul_
has to suffer too.

Hamlet's hesitation in the chapel, in its original theological context,
makes perfect sense.  And what makes that scene so powerful is that you
really _don't_ know whether Claudius may actually find forgiveness.
He's fumbling at it, going through the motions, but these are the sorts
of things that sinners often do before they are saved by an act of
Divine Grace (at least in Christian folklore that's how it is supposed
to happen -- if you can't cleanse your soul, at least act as if you
have, and the salvation will come in time).  Hence the original audience
(at least) understood Hamlet's resolve to wait until a more appropriate
time.

Andy White

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Don Bloom <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 16:09:31 -0600
Subject: 13.0143 Hamlet (Once More)
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.0143 Hamlet (Once More)

Edmund Taft writes,

> Don goes on to argue that the audience should be pretty sure after
> Hamlet springs "The Mousetrap" that not only is Claudius guilty, but
> also that the Ghost is a good ghost and represents God's will.

I don't have any complaint about most of what Ed says in his reply,
though I have the usual reservations, but here I have to clarify my
position. It isn't just the Ghost that says that Claudius is guilty.
Claudius does so.  Twice, in fact. Once quite frankly when he confesses
to committing the offence with "the primal eldest curse upon't, a
brother's murder"  (3.3).  Earlier, he tells us in an aside about the
"heavy burden" on his conscience (3.1).

These would seem to me fairly authoritative sources on the matter of the
king's guilt and the ghost's veracity.

Cheers,
don

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Re: For Sher

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.0157  Wednesday, 23 January 2002

From:           Judi Wilkins <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 11:43:13 +1100
Subject: 13.0146 Re: For Sher
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.0146 Re: For Sher

Some questions for you Charlie. What on earth do you mean by 'good'
Shakespeare?  Is it an artistic cousin of 'real' Shakespeare, that well
known paradigm of foyer critics ("I quite enjoyed it, but of course it
wasn't real Shakespeare")?  How does it differ from bad Shakespeare, and
how will I know the difference.  I await enlightenment.

Cheers,
Judi

_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, This email 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
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