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Home :: Archive :: 2003 :: June ::
Re: King John, Titus, Peele
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 14.1317  Monday, 30 June 2003

[1]     From:   Bob Grumman <
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        Date:   Friday, 27 Jun 2003 11:30:19 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 14.1302 Re: King John, Titus, Peele

[2]     From:   Jim Carroll <
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        Date:   Sunday, 29 Jun 2003 20:40:20 EDT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 14.1302 Re: King John, Titus, Peele

[3]     From:   Bill Lloyd <
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        Date:   Sunday, 29 Jun 2003 22:39:40 EDT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 14.1302 Re: King John, Titus, Peele

[4]     From:   Hardy M. Cook <
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        Date:   Monday, June 30, 2003
        Subj:   Signing Submissions


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Bob Grumman <
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Date:           Friday, 27 Jun 2003 11:30:19 -0400
Subject: 14.1302 Re: King John, Titus, Peele
Comment:        Re: SHK 14.1302 Re: King John, Titus, Peele

Brian Vickers:

>Secondly, I would like to draw the attention of SHAKSPER users to some
>activities on the newsgroup HLAS (humanities.lit.authors.shakespeare).
>Over the last few months, under the pseudonyms 'KQKnave' and 'Agent
>Jim', Jim Carroll (of Newburyport, Mass.?)

I'm not sure this is a fact, though it does appear that Jim Carroll is
the Jim KQKnave of HLAS--who sometimes signs himself as "Agent Jim" (as
a sarcasm against the Shakespeare-rejecters at HLAS who believe the
Stratford Trust has hired some of us to oppose them there) but is using
only one pseudonym.

>has been conducting a vicious
>campaign to discredit my books,
><I>Counterfeiting' Shakespeare</I> and
><I>Shakespeare, Co-Author</I>. Mr. Carroll is a devotee of Donald Foster
>(who cannot, of course, be held to blame for the activities of his
>acolytes), and is convinced that Shakespeare wrote all the plays in the
>First Folio, together with <I>A Lover's Complaint</I> and <I>A Funerall
>Elegie</I>.

I'm not sure he's "convinced" of that, just not yet disconvinced.

>Angry at those who -- like myself, Gilles Monsarrat, Ward
>Elliott, MacDonald Jackson, Brian Boyd, and Marina Tarlinskaja -- do not
>agree with him, Carroll has been attacking my work with a degree of
>misrepresentation amounting to systematic mendacity.

I consider KQKnave a friend, but do admit that he's been more unruly
than I would have liked in some of his posts against Prof. Vickers (and
I make unruly posts myself at times).  Those interested can check the
posts, but I truly feel that KQKnave is not intentionally
misrepresenting anything--although I'm sure he's gotten some things
pretty wrong.  I expect not too long from now (perhaps in a few weeks
when I'll be at a university library) to be reading Prof. Vickers' book,
so will be better equipped to judge what KQKnave's response to it.

On his behalf, I might say that at HLAS one tends to get irritable and
insulting fairly quickly because of the Shakespeare-rejecters one comes
up against, many of whom are incredibly arrogant, obtuse, and
contemptuous of their opponents--and who have been long opposed to the
assignation of The Elegy to Shakespeare, with zero reverence for names
and initials on title-pages, and related external evidence of
authorship.  So it's easy if incorrect to tar "Fordians" and "Peeleans"
with the same brush, and treat them similarly.

>This has reached
>such a degree of malice that another contributor to that newsgroup,
>Clark J. Holloway (who maintains two helpful webpages on Shakespeare and
>Jonson at http:hollowaypages) was moved to protest on my behalf. Their
>exchange can be read under the thread 'Counterfeiting Scholarship' with
>Carroll's latest attack on my removal of the <I>Funerall Elegye</I> from
>the Shakespeare canon (2003-06-21), and Mr. Holloway's reply
>(2003-06-24), which concludes: 'My apologies in advance to Bob, Dave [?
>David Kathman], and anyone else who may be offended by my remarks
>concerning Mr. Carroll's superficial, malicious, and reckless (his
>representations are much too numerous to be merely negligent) review of
>Vickers' book. But anyone drawing conclusions regarding Vickers'
>arguments based on Mr. Carroll's vicious diatribes have been purposely
>deceived.'

Well, Clark, also an HLAS friend of mine, and KQ have--regretfully--been
batting each other around for some time, so I don't think Clark is
capable of being entirely fair about KQ.

>While the internet is a formidable medium for the dissemination of both
>facts and opinions, as Carroll would put it, it is also a testing-ground
>for the health of human discourse. Systematic and malicious
>falsification of the record, as practised by Carroll, poisons the
>repositories of language and truth on which human society depends. 'Lie
>boldly', as Coleridge once paraphrased a cynical maxim, 'some of it is
>bound to stick'.

KQ does refer his readers to the specific pages of Counterfeiting
Shakespeare that he is discussing, as he discusses them, so whatever
misrepresentations he may be making should not stick to any properly
dutiful reader.  As I've written Clark, I'm glad SOMEone is expressing
opposition to Prof. Vickers, however uncivilly and perhaps occasionally
unfairly.  And KQ has been right at least a few times, it seems to
me--as well as wrong badly enough at other times for even me to post a
demurral.   In any event, for me, any opposition is better that than
wholesale acceptance of a position with flaws even if possibly much more
right than wrong.

--Bob G.

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Jim Carroll <
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Date:           Sunday, 29 Jun 2003 20:40:20 EDT
Subject: 14.1302 Re: King John, Titus, Peele
Comment:        Re: SHK 14.1302 Re: King John, Titus, Peele

B. Vickers <
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 > wrote,

>I'd like to add two footnotes to my last posting. First, on the
>differences between Shakespeare's use of rhetoric and Peele's, see
>Stefan Keller, 'Shakespeare's rhetorical fingerprint. New evidence on
>the authorship of Titus Andronicus', just published in English
>Studies. A Journal of English Language and Literature, vol. 84, no.
>2 (April 2003): 105-118. Mr. Keller takes six 800-line samples from
>Titus and Richard III, analyzes their use of some common
>figures of rhetoric, and shows very clear differences between the scenes
>ascribed to Peele and Shakespeare.

Well, not quite. Mr. Keller, a grad student of yours, is guilty of the
same cherry-picking and failure to use proper controls that cause most
attribution studies to be unconvincing.

Mr. Keller writes that Shakespeare would have had a choice of "over two
hundred" rhetorical figures to draw on. Yet in his study he chooses to
present data for only 13, some of which are lumped together in a curious
way. Under "puns", his footnote explains:

"Apart from asteismus and polyptoton, my count included acryologia
(ignorant misuse of words), antanaclasis (repeating a word while
shifting from one meaning to another), paronomasia (words repeated which
are nearly alike in sound but wide apart in meaning), and syllepsis (use
of a word having simultaneously two meanings)."

Yet for some reason he still has a separate entry for polyptoton, and
asteismus is likewise listed again apart from "puns", lumped together
with anthypophora. It's not clear why they are counted twice.

Keller then lists the occurrence per x lines for each rhetorical figure,
for 3 selections of about 800 words each from Titus and R3, labelled
T(a), T(b), T(c), and R(a), R(b) and R(c). T(a) consists of the portions
of Titus that Brian Vickers believes are by Peele (1.1, 2.1, 2.2, 4.1).
The frequency of some figures, like anaphora, appear to be similar, and
with similar variation, across both plays:

                    T(a)         T(b)         T(c)        R(a)
R(b)
     R(c)
anaphora      14.1        15.5         14.6        23.8        16.5
14.6

Others, like epistrophe, appear to be quite different:

                    T(a)         T(b)         T(c)        R(a)
R(b)        R(c)
epistrophe    395         108.6       95.9        53.6
53.8        52.5

But the numbers for T(b) and T(c) also don't appear to fit R3 very well
either, since the numbers for R3 indicate higher frequency, and greater
consistency, while even T(b) and T(c) seem to have a frequency that is
too low for R3.

Likewise hyperbaton,

                    T(a)         T(b)         T(c)        R(a)
R(b)       R(c)
hyperbaton  52.7        434.5       215.8      214.5          215
262.7

where the Titus frequencies are all over the map, while R3 is more
consistent.

I would guess that the rhetorical figures were chosen to highlight those
figures that show the greatest difference between act 1 and the rest of
the play, but that limits the usefulness of the data. I would guess that
we would see similar variation between Shakespeare's other plays for
these rhetorical figures or others, and that a more complete selection
of rhetorical figures would present a more rounded picture.

An equally important point is the lack of a control play. It's too easy
to focus on the likenesses or unlikenesses between only two works. For
example, for the case of hyperbaton, which Keller defines as "unusual
word order", with examples from Titus: "By him that justly may/ Bear his
betrothed from all the world away." 1.1.289-90, and "He by the senate is
accited home" 1.1.27. This appears to be quite frequent in T(a), but if
2H6 had been included in this study (a play for which I have already
noted some likenesses to 1.1 of Titus in this thread), he would have
found the same high rate of hyperbaton in the first 800 words of that
play. I counted 17 examples not including such things as "What mean'st
thou" rather than "What do you mean", both of which occur in
Shakespeare, but are probably just part of normal Elizabethan syntax. I
hope Mr. Keller was equally careful.  That works out to a frequency of
47, pretty close to the value for T(a). I can see from one of the
footnotes that Mr. Keller's thesis contains a study of forty rhetorical
figures from 8 Shakespearean plays, but that data is not presented in
the paper.

I would have to say that the most surprising aspect of this study is the
lack of any comparison to Peele's known plays. How exactly does
demonstrating that some differences that exist between Titus and R3 show
that Peele wrote the play?  Don't you want to count the rhetorical
figures in Peele as well?

>Secondly, I would like to draw the attention of SHAKSPER users to some
>activities on the newsgroup HLAS (humanities.lit.authors.shakespeare).

As for the rest of this, I can only say that Mr. Knave appears to have a
good head on his shoulders, but he has even less patience for dubious
scholarship than I do!

Jim Carroll

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Bill Lloyd <
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Date:           Sunday, 29 Jun 2003 22:39:40 EDT
Subject: 14.1302 Re: King John, Titus, Peele
Comment:        Re: SHK 14.1302 Re: King John, Titus, Peele

Dave Kathman is quite capable of defending himself should that be
necessary, but I'd like to stick my nose in and make a clarification.
Brian Vickers in his last post quotes Clark Holloway on
HLAS-Shakespeare: "My apologies in advance to Bob, Dave (David Kathman?)
and anyone else who might be offended by my remarks concerning Mr.
Carroll's superficial, reckless and malicious... review of Vickers'
book."  Lest this be taken to mean that Dave Kathman sides with Jim
Carroll in excoriating Vickers' Shakespeare Co-Author, let me quote
something Dave said to me last week: "I very much respect [Vickers] as a
scholar and think he did a great job overall in both his recent books."

The confusion over Dave's position may derive from his making common
cause with Jim Carroll and Bob [Grumman?] on HLAS against the anti-Strat
contingent who have turned that list into a swamp of vicious inanity.
Dave is also a personal friend of Vickers' old opponent Don Foster.
Clark Holloway in a later HLAS post quotes Dave from the Shakespeare
Authorship page: "I think Vickers is excessively hard on Don Foster
personally... but I also think he does a very impressive job of arguing
that John Ford, rather than Shakespeare, is the most likely author of
the Elegy."  We can hardly fault Dave for being loyal to his friend; but
his main loyalty is to the truth and to good scholarship wherever it may
be found.

Bill Lloyd

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Hardy M. Cook <
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Date:           Monday, June 30, 2003
Subject:        Signing Submissions

This thread provides me the opportunity to remind subscribers that I do
not published unattributed submissions on SHAKSPER. If your name does
not appear in the FROM line or does not appear correctly (i.e., account
is in the name of a spouse, companion, alias, etc.), please sign your
name at the bottom so that I can cut and paste it next to your e-mail
address.

Thanks,
Hardy


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