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Home :: Archive :: 2002 :: June ::
Re: Abrams and Foster on "A Funeral Elegy"
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.1523  Wednesday, 19 June 2002

[1]     From:   Stanley Wells <
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        Date:   Friday, 14 Jun 2002 15:58:52 +0100
        Subj:   RE: SHK 13.1514 Abrams and Foster on "A Funeral Elegy"

[2]     From:   Terence Hawkes <
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        Date:   Friday, 14 Jun 2002 13:00:45 -0400
        Subj:   SHK 13.1521 Re: Abrams and Foster on "A Funeral Elegy"

[3]     From:   Gabriel Egan <
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        Date:   Friday, 14 Jun 2002 17:41:34 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.1514 Abrams and Foster on "A Funeral Elegy"


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Stanley Wells <
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Date:           Friday, 14 Jun 2002 15:58:52 +0100
Subject: 13.1514 Abrams and Foster on "A Funeral Elegy"
Comment:        RE: SHK 13.1514 Abrams and Foster on "A Funeral Elegy"

As one who has been involved in the debate over the Funeral Elegy,
perhaps I may congratulate Gilles Monsarrat on his article and Drs
Foster and Abrams on their gracious acceptance of his conclusion.

Stanley Wells

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Terence Hawkes <
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Date:           Friday, 14 Jun 2002 13:00:45 -0400
Subject: Re: Abrams and Foster on "A Funeral Elegy"
Comment:        SHK 13.1521 Re: Abrams and Foster on "A Funeral Elegy"

Here at the Critical Theory Workshop Experimental Studio Rehearsal
Space, our analysts concluded long ago that "A Funeral Elegy" was
deliberately written by Shakespeare in the style of Ford.

Terence Hawkes

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Gabriel Egan <
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Date:           Friday, 14 Jun 2002 17:41:34 +0100
Subject: 13.1514 Abrams and Foster on "A Funeral Elegy"
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.1514 Abrams and Foster on "A Funeral Elegy"

Donald Foster wrote,

>Since 1997 I have had a second career in criminology
>and forensic linguistics that has taken time from an
>unfinished project that remains, for me, a source of
>frustration. The Shaxicon database-which contributed
>to my own conviction, in 1996, that Shakespeare wrote
>the elegy-is still unpublished.

That non-appearance has, indeed, been noticed.

>Nor have I yet determined where I went wrong
>with the statistical evidence.

You wouldn't be the only one pondering this if you'd published the
database. Scientists don't get their papers accepted unless they publish
their procedures so others can try to replicate (and, constructively,
try to falsify) the results. The peer-review process of science doesn't
accept the line "data coming, real soon now". Science's openness pays
intellectual dividends.

>Still, my experience in recent years with police
>detectives, FBI agents, lawyers, and juries has, I
>hope, made me a better scholar.

Can anyone see the opening here for a smart defence lawyer to appeal
some decisions? ("Your honour, he was called as an expert on
stylometrics, and now, well, you're not going to believe this...")

Gabriel Egan

PS Long-time readers will notice that the above is uncharitable. This is
intentional; I dislike our subject's relations with the media and its
ignoring of science's procedures for getting closer to the truth.

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