2002

Enigma Shakespeare Reference

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.1999  Friday, 27 September 2002

From:           Richard Burt <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Friday, 27 Sep 2002 08:28:41 -0400
Subject:        Enigma Shakespeare Reference

In the film Enigma (2001),  http://us.imdb.com/Title?0157583 screenplay
by Tom Stoppard, there is a small Shakespeare reference.  In the middle
of a speech given by the codebreakers manager, Skynner, a codebreaker
says"Shakespeare coming up" and then Skynner says "Out of this / nettle,
danger, we pluck this flower, safety."

Hotspur and Henry IV, Part One are not mentioned.

The villain's name is 'Puck' Pukowski.

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Re: Olivier on the Big Screen

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.1998  Friday, 27 September 2002

From:           Nancy Charlton <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Thursday, 26 September 2002 11:59:35 -0700
Subject: 13.1976 Olivier on the Big Screen
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.1976 Olivier on the Big Screen

Thanks, Brian Willis, for your insightful post. How much more you saw
here than I did the only time I have seen the Olivier Hamlet.

It came to my hometown of Bellingham WA fifty-some years ago, a few
months after Orson Welles' Macbeth. For that, our senior English class
received a special showing seeing as how we were studying it that
autumn, but the Hamlet was fair game for the entire student body. It's
amazing how 1200 kids suddenly develop an all-consuming interest in
Shakespeare when they get out of classes for the afternoon.

I wish I could say I perceived any of the subtleties Mr Willis points
out, but except for the dirt being thrown at the camera, I'm afraid very
little.  In fact, my outstanding memory was of the short feature. I
guess they really wanted to give us culture that day, because the short
was a ballet.  When the camera caught the male dancer full front and
bulging, the house went up in a simultaneous whoop. It didn't come up in
conversation at our 50th reunion last year but I'm sure this would be
the dominant  memory for most of us--especially since our preparation
didn't go much beyond "this is a GREAT play" or maybe like me had
Polonius's Advice to Laertes declaimed at them by a mom whose own
experience didn't go far beyond precepts to the memory.

Mr Willis notes:

>. . .   Firstly, Olivier's performance does not seem as overdone
>as it sometimes can be on a television.  Perhaps the cinema produces an
>atmosphere more like the theatre than a television.

This film came out about six years before TV became a household staple,
and I doubt that film makers then gave any thought to how their
productions would look on the small screen. As a contemporary question,
do any classes at the HS level, or earlier or later, ever consider
cinematography? If so, do they examine the balance between literary
values and visual ones? If not, why not? Does it create side issues more
properly considered under the head of philosophy, branch of aesthetics?

>I was always convinced that Jean Simmons is a brilliant Ophelia and the
>screen enhances the undervalued subtlety of her performance. I have
>rarely seen a mad scene that works as brilliantly as it does here . . .

This jogged my memory, and I feel just a little rue for not
understanding more of what I was seeing then. Does anyone ever study
people's responses to the same play at different periods of their lives?

>. . . The audience, mostly academy members, actually
>gave small audible gasps at the points where she passes out her flowers
>for remembrance and for rue. It is a remarkable achievement to make such
>a veiled and reference riddled scene have resonance with a modern (and
>non-scholarly) audience.

Come on! Must one be a scholar to be moved by such a scene?

>It is a highly charged moment that does not
>come through fully on a television. Also hard to see are the little
>gestures and tugs of Ophelia at Laertes as Polonius lectures him to be
>true to himself.

Thanks. I'll watch for these. I'm off to Blockbuster to rent a copy of
this film. I'd get the Richard also (which I have seen in both color and
BW) except one major tragedy per 3-day rental period is more than
enough.

>Also, it struck me last night that Oliver was perhaps not as wrong as
>previously thought when he declares Hamlet simply as a man who could not
>make up his mind. It could also lead us to the conclusion that Hamlet is
>unaware of the make up of his mind, its composition, and thence can not
>put his mind into order. This Hamlet is intensely aware of psychology,
>sometimes in a Freudian context, and part of that context is Hamlet's
>labyrinthine mind. This film is deeply concerned with that mind, . . .

Wasn't Jones's "Hamlet and Oedipus" all the rage in the 50s?  Certainly
much criticism focused on the Hamlet-Gertrude relationship, and as I
recall this Olivier play Hamlet as being almost obsessed with her. Freud
but not Freude. She  seemed much to staid, too correct, to have had an
affair with her brother-in-law; perhaps this characterization simply
heightened the mother-son tension. Her coolness, then, might have been a
quite deliberate act of keeping the lid on her exasperation with Hamlet
so as not to alienate him or push him over the edge. Olivier, as I
recall, played Hamlet as being quite mature. This shaped my image of the
play, in fact, and so many years and many Hamlets later the Mel Gibson
Hamlet seemed to strain credulity. Though the Leslie Howard/Norma
Shearer R&J is my all-time nominee in that department.

Nancy Charlton

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S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
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Re: Major Clerical Characters

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.1996  Friday, 27 September 2002

[1]     From:   R. A. Cantrell <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Thursday, 26 Sep 2002 11:15:03 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.1984 Re: Major Clerical Characters

[2]     From:   John W. Kennedy <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Thursday, 26 Sep 2002 12:36:25 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.1943 Re: Major Clerical Characters

[3]     From:   Brian Willis <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Thursday, 26 Sep 2002 09:37:19 -0700 (PDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.1984 Re: Major Clerical Characters


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           R. A. Cantrell <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Thursday, 26 Sep 2002 11:15:03 -0500
Subject: 13.1984 Re: Major Clerical Characters
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.1984 Re: Major Clerical Characters

I've made a muddle by mis-clipping. A point I wish to make is that
situating Hamlet hundreds of years before Luther also situates the play
prior to the establishment of a university at Wittenberg. There is no
stipulation in the play that 'school' is university, but the prince is a
bit long in the tooth for anything else. Also, the clash between
Wittenberg (Hamlet) and Paris (Laertes) may be over-read
(interestingly). Catholicism poisons Protestantism which in turn
destroys Religion. Seems to be working out.

All the best,
R.A. Cantrell
<This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           John W. Kennedy <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Thursday, 26 Sep 2002 12:36:25 -0400
Subject: 13.1943 Re: Major Clerical Characters
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.1943 Re: Major Clerical Characters

From:           Sean Lawrence <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

>You might, though, want to consider Merry Wives, where the major
>clerical figure is Parson Hugh.

<SIGH/>  I expressly excepted MWW in my original note.

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Brian Willis <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Thursday, 26 Sep 2002 09:37:19 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: 13.1984 Re: Major Clerical Characters
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.1984 Re: Major Clerical Characters

Back to the topic of major clerical characters in Shakespeare:

Why do so many of them have the potential for comedy? (for those who
believe in authorial intentions).  :)

Friar Laurence has been known to evoke laughs. The Archbishop of
Canterbury ("So that, as clear as is the summer's sun" ) is almost
certainly meant to stir laughter in the court. The more I rehearse King
John, the more I believe that some of the words of Pandulph (especially
the ridiculously contradictory and obtuse "all form is formless, order
orderless, Save that that is opposite to England's love" speech in II.
i.) are meant to be laughed at and scorned at times. If one believes
Malvolio to truly and literally be a Puritan as Maria claims, then he
could be argued as another clerical character for us to laugh at. What
is so funny about religion? Could it have anything to do with the
dichotomy between the clergy and the lewdness at the theatres of the
time?

Brian Willis

_______________________________________________________________
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 Web Site <http://www.shaksper.net>

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.

Re: Comedy of Errors

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.1997  Friday, 27 September 2002

From:           R. A. Cantrell <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Thursday, 26 Sep 2002 11:35:24 -0500
Subject: 13.1988 Re: Comedy of Errors
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.1988 Re: Comedy of Errors

Don Bloom rightly avers that

>S. Ant,
>though he assumes that Syracuse is full of witches and conjurors,

noting 2.2.97

"They say this town is full of cozenage,. . . "

A Roger Rees production of the play had S. Antipholus read this  out of
a Blue Guide ( as is noted in many articles). Has anyone found a better
"they" than the Blue Guide?

All the best,
R.A. Cantrell
<This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

_______________________________________________________________
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 Web Site <http://www.shaksper.net>

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.

Re: Authorial Intentions

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.1995  Friday, 27 September 2002

[1]     From:   Claude Caspar <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Thursday, 26 Sep 2002 12:17:42 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.1985 Re: Authorial Intentions

[2]     From:   Claude Caspar <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Thursday, 26 Sep 2002 12:17:42 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.1985 Re: Authorial Intentions

[3]     From:   Marcus Dahl <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Thursday, 26 Sep 2002 12:33:29 EDT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.1985 Re: Authorial Intentions

[4]     From:   L. Swilley <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Thursday, 26 Sep 2001 12:12:22 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.1985 Re: Authorial Intentions

[5]     From:   Martin Steward <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Friday, 27 Sep 2002 09:18:32 +0100
        Subj:   SHK 13.1985 Re: Authorial Intentions

[6]     From:   Hugh Grady <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Friday, 27 Sep 2002 08:52:23 -0400
        Subj:   RE: SHK 13.1985 Re: Authorial Intentions


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Claude Caspar <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Thursday, 26 Sep 2002 12:17:42 -0400
Subject: 13.1985 Re: Authorial Intentions
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.1985 Re: Authorial Intentions

This week's New Yorker has a fascinating essay on Bloom... Great story
of a confrontation with Greenblatt.  Somehow this thread made me mention
this...

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Claude Caspar <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Thursday, 26 Sep 2002 12:17:42 -0400
Subject: 13.1985 Re: Authorial Intentions
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.1985 Re: Authorial Intentions

Regarding Brian Willis


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