2004

Enfants Terribles Symposium Jan. 8-9

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 15.1919  Thursday, 21 October 2004

From:           Gary Taylor <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, October 20, 2004 11:21 AM
Subject:        Enfants Terribles Symposium Jan. 8-9

The envelope please...

Our search for "the six most brilliant Renaissance scholars in the world
under 40" has been exhilarating, humbling, and excruciating. I will
publish in a subsequent email a list of all the scholars nominated
(including many who turned out to be over 40). Every nominated scholar
deserves recognition, and any six of them would have produced a splendid
symposium.

Different judges would, no doubt, have chosen differently. I and my
colleague Professor Sharon O'Dair ruled out of consideration our own
younger colleague and our own former students because, however deserving
they might be, our choice of them would have been dismissed as
favoritism. (The many of you who nominated colleagues or former students
will appreciate how difficult and in some ways unfair that self-imposed
restriction was.) We have not chosen candidates on the basis of how many
nominations they received: this is not a popularity contest-and in any
case it was obvious that some people actively solicited nominations. We
have not chosen candidates on the basis of the sheer number of their
publications, but on what we regard as the quality and significance of
their work. (Nevertheless, in practice it has proven difficult to assess
the work of really young scholars, and the youngest of our chosen
"enfants" is 33.) We have not chosen people because we agree with them:
we would want to quarrel with aspects of the work of every one of the
winners. But an "enfant terrible", by definition, should be infuriating
as well as exciting: someone who challenges the paradigms of the older
generation, including the judges. We were not looking for people who do
superlatively well what their teachers taught them to do, but for people
who push the boundaries of the discipline in new directions. I encourage
any scholar who didn't get chosen to seize this opportunity to prove us
wrong, so that ten or twenty years from now we will be deeply
embarrassed to have overlooked such a colossal talent. Personally, I
have always found rejection the most powerful stimulus to aggressive
reinvestment.

We were so inundated by compelling nominations that we decided to hold
two symposia. The first, featuring six young scholars who work primarily
on drama, will take place at the University of Alabama on January 8 and
9, 2005. The second, featuring six young scholars who work primarily on
poetry and prose, will take place later in 2005; I will announce details
of that symposium within the next month or so. I list below, in
alphabetical order, the six speakers at the Enfants Terribles
(dramatiques) symposium, along with references to two representative
short samples of their work, chosen by themselves.

KAREN BRITLAND (33, Keele University) for feminist and archival work on
the drama of the 1630s
---'"All emulation cease, and jars": political possibilities in
_Chloridia_, Queen Henrietta Maria's masque of 1631', _The Ben Jonson
Journal_ 9 (2002),87-108
---'An under-stated mother-in-law: Marie de M


The Meaning of Hamlet

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 15.1918  Wednesday, 20 October 2004

[1]     From:   Stephen C. Rose <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 19 Oct 2004 12:00:26 -0700 (PDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.1910 The Meaning of Hamlet

[2]     From:   Colin Cox <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 19 Oct 2004 12:48:58 -0700
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.1910 The Meaning of Hamlet

[3]     From:   Larry Weiss <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 19 Oct 2004 18:23:13 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.1910 The Meaning of Hamlet

[4]     From:   Terence Hawkes <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Wednesday, 20 Oct 2004 07:24:10 -0400
        Subj:   SHK 15.1910 The Meaning of Hamlet

[5]     From:   Kenneth Chan <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Wednesday, 20 Oct 2004 09:20:17 +0800
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.1910 The Meaning of Hamlet


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Stephen C. Rose <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 19 Oct 2004 12:00:26 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: 15.1910 The Meaning of Hamlet
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.1910 The Meaning of Hamlet

Are Ophelia's suggestive songs when she is allegedly acting crazy a
gloss either on the K and Q's relationship, or on her's with Hamlet --
and, if the latter, to an implicit loss of virginity?

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Colin Cox <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 19 Oct 2004 12:48:58 -0700
Subject: 15.1910 The Meaning of Hamlet
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.1910 The Meaning of Hamlet

 >>Burleigh was well reputed for his pithy aphorisms as reflected in
 >>Polonius' advice to his offspring. Also the fishmonger comment can be
 >>attributed to Burleigh.
 >
 >Is there documentary evidence for this attribution?

The tradition that Polonius (or Corambis (Cabbage served up twice is
death), if we go with Q1) is a parody of Burghley first arose, I
believe, with a connection between the advice scene and Burghley's own
'Precepts' to his son Sir Robert (I'd love to see Laertes as a
hunchback!). Now it is true this was somewhat of a tradition. Raleigh
wrote 'Instructions to his Son' and the 9th earl of Northumberland wrote
'Advice to his Son.' There is also a letter that Sir Philip Sidney
received from his father with a slew of 'listen to dad' stuff.

And of course a fishmonger can easily be understood to be a 'bawd' and
Polonius certainly is 'selling' his daughter, but Burghley was very
closely tied to an number of attempts to pass a law making Wednesday's
the other Friday! (I have no Oxfordian intent here!)

Further to this, and this would be a hefty discussion, I believe William
to be very closely linked to both Essex and Southampton and would have a
host of reasons to want Burghley 'lambasted.'

All food for thought, and certainly has helped all the actors I have
directed in the role.

Note to Bill Arnold: yes I do think it makes Will's intention as a
dramatist clearer; certainly as an actor. I like your notion of the
rhymes. But then we get into that age old conundrum, 'what's in a name?'
- if anyone knows it's William.

Colin Cox

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Larry Weiss <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 19 Oct 2004 18:23:13 -0400
Subject: 15.1910 The Meaning of Hamlet
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.1910 The Meaning of Hamlet

 >I agree that Shakespeare definitely highlights Claudius's alcoholic
 >indulgence. There is no dispute that Claudius has this problem.

No dispute?  There is no evidence he does have this problem.  Claudius
celebrates with drink; but don't most of us?  Are we all alkies?  At no
point does Claudius appear to be other than in complete control of
himself  -- yes, even at the end of The Mousetrap, after intolerable
provocation and on an occasion when drink would be flowing.

When Hamlet says he more honors the breach of the drinking custom, even
though he is "to the manner born," I take him at his word.  But what
does he mean?  Surely not just that he was born in Denmark where
drinking is common, for then the statement would be redundant:  "I am
native here and to the manner born."  It seems to me that Hamlet is
saying that at least one of his parents was addicted to drink.  There is
nothing to suggest that Hamlet pere was, so that leaves Gertrude unless
we accept T. Hawkes's speculation that Claudius was Hamlet's natural
father.  Even then, "to the manner born" could nor refer to Claudius
unless Hamlet was aware of his bastardy, and the entire plot belies that.

Gertrude as a lush makes a lot of sense in the context of other scenes,
such as her narration of Ophelia's death.  It makes her death
particularly poignant:  "The queen carouses to thy fortune, Hamlet. ...
Gertruide, do not drink./  I will my lord; I pray you pardon me."  It
sounds like the sort of echange that might have been commonplace in the
royal apartment if this interpretation is correct.  And, that would be
even more reason to believe Claudius is not an alcoholic.  He is not
even an enabler.

I have posted on this subject before, so I will not repeat all I have
said.  I refer anyone who might be interested to the archives.

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Terence Hawkes <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 20 Oct 2004 07:24:10 -0400
Subject: The Meaning of Hamlet
Comment:        SHK 15.1910 The Meaning of Hamlet

Kenneth Chan's revelation that

 >"a key message in Hamlet is exactly that we should be true to
ourselves and
 >face up to reality"

is nothing short of stunning. Could the same 'key message' possibly
appear in works by other great artists? I've just had a letter from the
Inland Revenue that contains a strikingly similar injunction.

T. Hawkes

[5]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Kenneth Chan <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 20 Oct 2004 09:20:17 +0800
Subject: 15.1910 The Meaning of Hamlet
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.1910 The Meaning of Hamlet

John Reed writes:

 >"So, Kenneth, you're not approaching this from a Humanist point of view,
 >it seems.  What is your point of view?  Is it your own idiosyncratic
 >one, or does it have something in common with somebody else's?"

John, I guess you are basically asking me which school or religious
doctrine I am following. We can, of course, also pose a similar question
regarding Shakespeare, i.e. what school or religious doctrine does
Shakespeare subscribe to? I will address these questions, but perhaps
not in the usual way.

Let me first pose another question. In order to be spiritual, does one
have to follow a particular religious doctrine or a particular religious
text, and intellectually study what that text says? In other words, must
the spiritual path be based on some kind of belief system?

Let me now state unequivocally here what I hold to be true: Blind faith
can be dangerous and harmful. If we are lucky, we may end up believing
in something beneficial; if we are not so lucky, well ... I think you
can figure out some possible dire consequences.

If there is one message I would like to propagate, it would be exactly
this: Blind faith can be potentially dangerous and harmful; the true
spiritual path is based on verification, just as any scientific
discipline is based on verification.

The only difference is that spiritual principles cannot be publicly
demonstrated and proved to everyone in the way a scientific principle
can. It is not like a scientific experiment we can conduct in a lab and
openly demonstrate to others; in order to verify a spiritual principle,
each of us has to experience it for ourselves. In other words, we each
have to take the spiritual path ourselves and verify the truth for
ourselves. There is no other way.

What needs to be done is actually simple to put in words, but
unfortunately rather difficult to implement. What is required on the
spiritual path is essentially this: Each of us has to transform
ourselves, step by step, towards the higher spiritual ideal that each of
us can perceive. It is based on what we KNOW (not believe) we have to do
to become a better person.

Every one of us knows at least one thing we can do to transform into a
better person. This then is the next step we have to take. We must act
on it. We have to take every next step that we each KNOW is required to
transform into a better person. When we have achieved that step
immediately before us, we will always know the next step following that.
The process is akin to climbing a mountain - the view gets clearer with
each new height we reach. And if we continue this process, we will reach
the very summit. Unfortunately, if we refuse the next step before us,
that is where we stop. We have to cross every threshold we know we have
to cross, for there is no other way to progress.

As we transform ourselves in this way, the spiritual principles will
unfold before us. We will verify them because we will experience them
directly. There is no need then for the intellectual study or belief in
any written dogma. We will already have verified for ourselves which
teachings are correct. Make no mistake, I am not asking anyone to
believe this. What I am saying is that we can each verify all this for
ourselves. The only question we have to ask ourselves is this: Are we
prepared to make the commitment and do it?

I consider Shakespeare to be a highly spiritual being because the
messages in his plays do not appear to be derived from a mere
intellectual interpretation of any particular religion's scriptural
doctrine. The nature of the messages strongly suggests that they are the
direct realizations of an advanced mystic who has actually undertaken
the arduous task of transforming his life and personality towards the
spiritual ideal. True aspirants of the spiritual path - the saints and
the bodhisattvas - attain their realizations from direct experience.

Regards,
Kenneth Chan
http://homepage.mac.com/sapphirestudios/qod/index.html

_______________________________________________________________
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Hardy M. Cook, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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DISCLAIMER: Although SHAKSPER is a moderated discussion list, the
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Billy Bob on the Bard

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 15.1916  Wednesday, 20 October 2004

From:           Bill Lloyd <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 19 Oct 2004 14:26:00 EDT
Subject: 15.1911 Billy Bob on the Bard
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.1911 Billy Bob on the Bard

I suggest casting Billy Bob Thornton as Angelo in a version of Measure
for Measure re-set in the American South during the Reconstruction. It
could take place in Vienna, Virginia and Billy Bob could be wound up
about the debasement of Confederate currency. Bob-cat Goldthwaite as
Pompey and John Goodman as Barnardine.

Billy Joe Lloyd

_______________________________________________________________
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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.

Question on Measure for Measure

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 15.1917  Wednesday, 20 October 2004

[1]     From:   Todd Pettigrew <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 19 Oct 2004 15:25:32 -0300
        Subj:   RE: SHK 15.1908 Question on Measure for Measure

[2]     From:   John Briggs <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Wednesday, 20 Oct 2004 01:22:22 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.1909 Question on Measure for Measure

[3]     From:   M Yawney <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 19 Oct 2004 17:27:40 -0700 (PDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.1909 Question on Measure for Measure

[4]     From:   John Briggs <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Wednesday, 20 Oct 2004 02:05:10 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.1888 Question on Measure for Measure

[5]     From:   Tom Krause <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 19 Oct 2004 22:01:20 -0400
        Subj:   SHK 15.1908 Question on Measure for Measure


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Todd Pettigrew <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 19 Oct 2004 15:25:32 -0300
Subject: 15.1908 Question on Measure for Measure
Comment:        RE: SHK 15.1908 Question on Measure for Measure

On the matter of how common the name "Mariana" was in plays, and for
what it's worth, Berger and Bradford's Character Index lists 14 plays
from the period with a character named "Mariana." Another 10 named "Marian."

Todd Pettigrew
UCCB

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           John Briggs <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 20 Oct 2004 01:22:22 +0100
Subject: 15.1909 Question on Measure for Measure
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.1909 Question on Measure for Measure

Tom Krause wrote:

 >For example, I see significance in the fact that Mariana's brother the
 >great soldier Frederick who died at sea had the same name as a great
 >soldier who had recently died at sea, just as others see significance
 >in references to the gallows, the sweat, the war and an order about
 >plucking down houses.  If Shakespeare didn't mean Spinola, why would
 >he confuse his audience by using his name?  Wouldn't he have just
 >picked a name and occupation that didn't match those of someone who
 >had recently died at sea?  And if he did mean Spinola, doesn't that
 >mean that Mariana probably stands for something or someone as well? So
even if you could correlate Marianas to bed tricks, the
 >"Frederick" reference (among other things) militates against that
 >being the final answer.

Peter Bridgman kicked this all off by commenting on Tom Krause's style
of reasoning.  Once again Tom Krause has made the assertion that "the
great soldier Frederick who died at sea" was a reference to Federico di
Spinola, but without producing any evidence that anyone in England had
heard of him! If no one had heard of him, why would the audiences be
confused?  For the record, my own view is that "Measure for Measure" is
a work of fiction, and that the names have no significance.  The onus is
on Tom Krause to produce contemporary English reports of Federico and
his death.

In a similar vein, it might inform the discussion of Juan de Mariana if
it could be established which (if any) of his works featured in the only
known large seventeenth-century Jesuit library in England, now at
Lambeth Palace (!) - see Hendrik Dijkgraaf, The Library of a Jesuit
Community at Holbeck, Nottinghamshire, 1679 (2003) isbn 0951881175.

I do, however, find the correlation of Marianas to bed-tricks
intriguing, and would suggest that Shakespeare (possibly unconsciously)
picked up the name 'Mariana' while studying other bed-trick plays,
preparatory to writing one of his own - probably "All's Well That Ends
Well".

On a lighter note, I can report that I have not come to a conclusion
over the knotty problem of whether Lyford Grange still had a moat in the
late sixteenth century - nor, indeed, whether it was even called Lyford
Grange, rather than More Place, its previous name.  I have, however,
located a chapel of St Luke, but it is three miles away from Lyford, is
not in the same parish, and is not in the villages nearest to Lyford.
Its precise location is left as an exercise for the credulous!

John Briggs

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           M Yawney <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 19 Oct 2004 17:27:40 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: 15.1909 Question on Measure for Measure
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.1909 Question on Measure for Measure

I probably did not pay attention enough to the whole debate and assumed
you considered the allegory to be more central. If the allegory is only
slightly related to the plot Shakespeare chose and has little impact on
the play's meaning, then it does seem to be a pretty marginal issue even
in your account of it.

Most allegories of the period (and after) have original plots, since it
would be highly unlikely to find an existing story that would carry an
analogy.  But you say the allegory is not strongly connected to the main
plot of Measure. It still seems odd for a writer to take trouble to
insert allegorical elements into an existing plot structure. Even odder
not to make bolder connections in the analogy and more clearly signaling
intent.

While I am sensitive to the fact that there is much we do not understand
about the first audiences' understanding of the work and the signals
embedded therein, the type of connections you make are not referred to
in any documents that I know of from the period. Plays taken as
analogies to contemporary issues (such as Richard II or A Game at Chess)
more bluntly connect to the issues they were thought to be speaking
about. No writer that I can think of that era refers to secret or covert
meanings in contemporary drama, which would support this debasement
allegory theory. They only refer to more overt meanings, even in plays
though to use allegory or analogy. I know that in other writing of the
period had a range of allegorical writing, but I cannot identify the
sort of allegory you propose in drama of the period or in documents
referring to the theater.

While it is possible that you are correct, there seems to be little
evidence that supports your theory. There is no strong or definite
context of similar work to place an allegorical Measure in, so the
theory relies on our lack of knowledge about how writing was written and
understood in Renaissance England. This theory cannot be specifically
disproved since there is so little outside of your reading of the play
to support it. I think that is ultimately the source of the frustration
here. The whole theory is based on elements of the text that seem
ambiguous proofs at best to most readers and there is nothing strong
enough outside the play to tip the balance. The even more arguable
references to angels in R&J seem to weaken the argument rather than
strengthen it, because there the analogy would have even less point in
most readers' view. The allegory has little context in drama of the
period and no strong evidence to indicate Measure is a unique case.

You can respond if you like and I would very much hope there is
something I am missing to document the existence of work such as you
suggest Measure is. I will let you have the last word and not respond
back since I know this whole can of worms is irksome to many. I only
re-opened it this far because the issue of context was one I looked for
in the earlier thread and did not see addressed.

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           John Briggs <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 20 Oct 2004 02:05:10 +0100
Subject: 15.1888 Question on Measure for Measure
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.1888 Question on Measure for Measure

Tom Krause wrote:

 >The play contains several obvious signs of revision including: (1)
 >systematic expurgation consistent with 1608 Act to Restrain Abuses by
 >Players; (2) act divisions; (3) a stanza of a Fletcher song that was
 >written between 1617 and 1620.

The Act was, of course, 1606 rather than 1608, but points (1) and (2)
are easily answered when it is remembered that the First Folio text of
"Measure for Measure" derives from a transcript by Ralph Crane.  Crane
seems to have been employed in some capacity by the King's Men, and it
is usually asserted that his transcripts are literary, but I would
rather say that his role was to make new playbooks - he would therefore
insert act divisions, and automatically carry out expurgation in line
with the 1606 Act (expurgation was only required for performance, not
publication).  It is not clear why Crane did this, but he may not have
been told that his transcripts were to be printer's copy - it may have
been a covert way of shifting publication expenses to the King's Men,
and away from the publishers.  There may anyway have been a general
programme of updating playbooks, and publishing Shakespeare's Works may
have been a spin-off from that.  (I am ignoring the question of "massed
entries", but will simply say that it is not obvious to me that they are
a literary rather than theatrical feature.)

As for (3), it is not obvious that the whole song (there is only one
stanza in "Measure for Measure") was written by Fletcher, nor that his
play "Rollo" was written in 1617-20, rather than 1624-5 as previously
thought.

What worries me about the attribution of revision to Middleton is that
John Jowett has now come out and declared "Timon of Athens" (1605) to be
a collaboration between Shakespeare and Middleton.  If that is indeed
the case, why should the putative Middleton revisions to "Measure for
Measure" (1603/4) and "Macbeth" (1606), be revisions rather than the
result of collaboration, and thus contemporaneous?

John Briggs

[5]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Tom Krause <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 19 Oct 2004 22:01:20 -0400
Subject: Question on Measure for Measure
Comment:        SHK 15.1908 Question on Measure for Measure

John Briggs wrote -

". . . it could indicate an audience demand for bed-trick plays with
characters called Mariana - or a widespead interest in currency
debasement, of course..."

Thanks John - I knew you'd come around!

Seriously, although it didn't make it into the essay, it's worth
mentioning that Shakespeare's other uses of Mariana - in All's Well, and
on the front page of three of the quarto versions of Pericles (meaning
"Marina") - are not inconsistent with "Mariana = Juan de Mariana."  The
Mariana in All's Well has only two substantive lines, in which she warns
women not to allow themselves to become debased by men:

MARIANA
Come, let's return again, and suffice ourselves with
the report of it. Well, Diana, take heed of this
French earl: the honour of a maid is her name; and
no legacy is so rich as honesty.

. . .

MARIANA
I know that knave; hang him! one Parolles: a
filthy officer he is in those suggestions for the
young earl. Beware of them, Diana; their promises,
enticements, oaths, tokens, and all these engines of
lust, are not the things they go under: many a maid
hath been seduced by them; and the misery is,
example, that so terrible shows in the wreck of
maidenhood, cannot for all that dissuade succession,
but that they are limed with the twigs that threaten
them. I hope I need not to advise you further; but
I hope your own grace will keep you where you are,
though there were no further danger known but the
modesty which is so lost.

And Marina of Pericles is Shakespeare's model of purity - as shown in
the brothel scenes, for example:

MARINA
If fires be hot, knives sharp, or waters deep,
Untied I still my virgin knot will keep.
Diana, aid my purpose!

Note also the references to Diana in both plays.  In All's Well, Diana
is a virgin character named for the goddess of chastity (thus a symbol
of purity, thus a metaphor for pure coinage); in Pericles, Marina is
appealing to the goddess herself.

And naturally we can tie the goddess Diana to Juan de Mariana, since he
mentions her at the outset of his dedication of De Rege (1599) to Philip
III.

Of course, Shakespeare went out of his way to tell us that "Marina" was
so named because she came from the sea.  On the other hand, putting
"Mariana" on the front page - if it wasn't a compositor's error in a
corrupt version of the play - could have been a signal to those who were
looking for yet another play featuring Juan de Mariana.

Note to critics:  while I am of course interested in your reactions to
the above Mariana-Marina digression, please don't make the mistake of
thinking it is in any way critical to the MFM or Hamlet debasement theories.

Tom Krause

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Greenblatt

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 15.1915  Wednesday, 20 October 2004

[1]     From:   Peter Bridgman <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 19 Oct 2004 19:26:31 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.1906 Greenblatt

[2]     From:   Edmund Taft <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 19 Oct 2004 15:39:27 -0400
        Subj:   Greenblatt


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Peter Bridgman <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 19 Oct 2004 19:26:31 +0100
Subject: 15.1906 Greenblatt
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.1906 Greenblatt

Douglas Galbi writes ...

 >Like WS's parents,
 >WS and Anne didn't name any (of their two) daughters Mary.  In Stratford
 >and Solihull from 1570 to 1585, about 5% of new-born girls were being
 >named Mary, and the share was rising rapidly.  In 1603, Shakespeare's
 >sister Joan and her husband William named their first-born daughter
 >Mary.  These facts, it seems to me, are worth pondering.  The lack of
 >attention to Mary in relation to Shakespeare testifies to the power of
 >the current, dominant symbolic configuration: "Mary, bloody
 >Mary...bloody counter-reformation, civil war."  Mary needs to be
 >understood with more historical self-consciousness and personal
sensitivity.

It is quite ridiculous to infer that because William and Anne didn't
name either of their girls Mary they were distancing themselves from the
Counter-Reformation.

The names they chose (Susanna and Judith) are both Old Testament names.
Susanna comes from the story of Susanna and the Elders (Daniel chapter
13) and Judith comes from the book of Judith.  As both Daniel 13 and the
book of Judith were dropped from the Protestant bible, one could say
that William and Anne were distancing themselves from Protestantism.
But that would be equally as ridiculous.

Peter Bridgman

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Edmund Taft <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 19 Oct 2004 15:39:27 -0400
Subject:        Greenblatt

Douglas Galbi writes:

"Maria in Twelfth Night is rightly recognized to be viciously
instrumental, and her absence in the final, happy scene shows that life
in her is in an important sense a blank."

There's little doubt that Maria is a social climber who succeeds where
Malvolio fails. She gets to marry Sir Toby and she may take over running
the great house if Malvolio is too shamed to ever return to his old job.
Interestingly, there are some characters in TN who seem more appealing
at first than once we get to know them: Sir Toby, Maria, and perhaps
Sebastian too.  Unlike Malvolio, they have pleasing personalities - at
least at first.

The lesson may be a very practical one: no matter how competent you are
at your job, if your personality grates on others, you will never
advance and others will scheme to get rid of you. On the other hand, you
can go a long way on personality alone, or just on being pleasant.

Ed Taft

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