The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 14.041 Wednesday, 8 January 2003
Date: Tuesday, 07 Jan 2003 09:08:33 -0500
Subject: 14.034 Re: Lovely Garnish
Comment: Re: SHK 14.034 Re: Lovely Garnish
>There are two good reasons for Jessica to dress like a boy:
>1. The actor was a boy, and would have been more comfortable in boy's
>clothing whenever possible. Especially if he has to climb out of a
>2. Changing gender is a particularly effective disguise, I should
>think. Anyone looking for Jessica would be looking for a girl.
Might I suggest some additional (modern) actor opportunities for
Jessica's cross-dressing: that Jessica's uncertainty and shame of
crossing clothing-coded boundaries of gender correspond to her
justifiable apprehensiveness about crossing clothing-coded boundaries of
ethnicity and religion. If you want to look at this more positively,
from an early-modern perspective, one could argue instead that just as
Jessica's cross-dressing celebrates that gender identity (in the
theatre, at least) is performative, so too is religious identity and
ethnic identity performative. (I prefer the former reading; but, then
again, I find it hard to accept any cheerful readings of that play).
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
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.