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Home :: Archive :: 2002 :: December ::
Re: Cordelia
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.2396  Wednesday, 11 December 2002

[1]     From:   Martin Steward <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 10 Dec 2002 14:19:18 -0000
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.2391 Re: Cordelia

[2]     From:   W. L. Godshalk <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 10 Dec 2002 16:00:45 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.2391 Re: Cordelia

[3]     From:   Dale Lyles <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 10 Dec 2002 16:33:16 EST
        Subj:   Terence's Distinction

[4]     From:   David Evett <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 10 Dec 2002 18:01:00 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.2391 Re: Cordelia

[5]     From:   Michael Shurgot <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 10 Dec 2002 16:02:00 -0800
        Subj:   RE: SHK 13.2391 Re: Cordelia

[6]     From:   Sean Lawrence <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 10 Dec 2002 22:24:49 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.2391 Re: Cordelia


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Martin Steward <
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Date:           Tuesday, 10 Dec 2002 14:19:18 -0000
Subject: 13.2391 Re: Cordelia
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.2391 Re: Cordelia

I'd vote for Goneril and Regan.

It's the economy stupid! Their approach to running this shambles of a
country is the only one that could possibly appeal to decent,
hardworking taxpayers.

In "King" Lear's Britain, you'd be forgiven for wondering where all the
yeomen had gone (let alone the peasants...). This play is apparently
about property, and it's motto is "nothing will come of nothing". So
where does all the money come from? "Superfluity" - or whatever Marx
would have called it...?

Beats me. I'd say that Shakespeare was no economist, except I've read
Coriolanus and Henry VIII.

martin

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           W. L. Godshalk <
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Date:           Tuesday, 10 Dec 2002 16:00:45 -0500
Subject: 13.2391 Re: Cordelia
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.2391 Re: Cordelia

T. Hawkes asks:

>Why do people persist in paying more attention to what the characters
>say than to what the play says?

I think I have the answer.  I have heard characters on stage talking,
but I have never heard a play say one word.  Perhaps Terence will tell
us the way(s) in which we can hear a play talking.

Yours,
Bill Godshalk

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Dale Lyles <
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Date:           Tuesday, 10 Dec 2002 16:33:16 EST
Subject:        Terence's Distinction

It is so good to return to this list after being away for a while and
find the discussion as intriguing as ever.  It is especially good to be
presented with this elegant little koan from Terence Hawkes:

Why do people persist in paying more attention to what the characters
say than to what the play says?

Perhaps it is my limitation as a producer of plays--when the only tool
you have is a hammer, every problem is a nail--but what do we have
available to us to pay attention to other than what the characters say?

Have I missed the point?  Or have I not meditated upon the koan enough?
I seek illumination.

Dale "Grasshopper" Lyles
Newnan Community Theatre Company
http://newnantheatre.com

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           David Evett <
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Date:           Tuesday, 10 Dec 2002 18:01:00 -0500
Subject: 13.2391 Re: Cordelia
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.2391 Re: Cordelia

>Why do people persist in paying more attention to what the characters
>say than to what the play says?

I hope I'm not the only member of the list who would be deeply grateful
if Prof. Hawkes would explain how the play "says" anything except by way
of what the characters (I'm a little surprised that he allows himself to
use this highly suspect term, though perhaps that issue will be part of
his explanation, if he deigns to give it) say.  Or does what the play
says inhere entirely in stage directions?

Befuddlledly,
David Evett

[5]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Michael Shurgot <
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Date:           Tuesday, 10 Dec 2002 16:02:00 -0800
Subject: 13.2391 Re: Cordelia
Comment:        RE: SHK 13.2391 Re: Cordelia

Dear Professor Cook & Colleagues:

When I joined this listserv, I assumed that scholarly opinion would
be/could be exchanged in a professional and courteous fashion. I assumed
also that one's opinions would be respected as long as one presented
them in he spirit of honest debate and with due respect to one's
colleagues. That has been the spirit that has animated SAA for me for
the past 25+ years, and that I hope will continue to characterize
scholarly debate about Shakespeare. After all, one must exchange ideas
in the realization that, as someone once said (I don't recall who),
about a writer/dramatist such as Shakespeare we are likely to be wrong
most of the time. Or something like that.

All of the above said, I must admit that I was offended by the obviously
ad hominen nature of Carol Barton's post of 9 December. I will admit
that my use of the word "miffed" was ill advised, as it seemed to
preclude further discussion or to assume definitive knowledge, or some
such thing. Using that word was an error, but I did not write that post
to be arrogant, nor to attempt to preclude further discussion of
Cordelia, or Lear, or anybody else in that play. I was writing quickly
as I had much else to do, this being final exam time, and I wanted only
to present another version of an idea I had broached several months ago.
And I did so assuming that readers, if they cared to read my post, would
accept my remarks in the spirit in which they were offered, as I explain
above. If we cannot exchange ideas in a professional, courteous manner,
then perhaps we ought to examine the reason why this listserv exists.

I suspect that Professor Cook may choose not to send this post, because
he believes that I should communicate personally with Ms. Barton, whom I
admit I have not had the pleasure of meeting. Perhaps I shall do so in
Victoria.  If not sending this post is Hardy's decision, I shall respect
that. But I am sending this note as a conventional post because I
believe that scholarly criticism ought to be above such personal remarks
as Ms. Barton's post contained. My skin is as thick as anyone else's,
and heaven and hell know how often I am wrong, but I did not appreciate
the obvious attempt to belittle me and my ideas. I try hard to respect
others' scholarly opinion, and I would hope that others would treat mine
similarly, even if they are perceived to be completely nutty.

My best wishes to all for the holidays.

Regards,
Michael Shurgot

[6]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Sean Lawrence <
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Date:           Tuesday, 10 Dec 2002 22:24:49 -0400
Subject: 13.2391 Re: Cordelia
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.2391 Re: Cordelia

Terence Hawkes wonders,

>Why do people persist in paying more attention to what the characters
>say than to what the play says?

Because there's no narrator?  Because almost all the words are given to
characters?

Cheers,
Sean.

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