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Home :: Archive :: 2005 :: January ::
The Renaissance Horse": A Call for Contributors
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 16.0159  Wednesday, 26 January 2005

[1]     From:   D Bloom <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 25 Jan 2005 10:47:15 -0600
        Subj:   RE: SHK 16.0143 The Renaissance Horse": A Call for Contributors

[2]     From:   Martin Steward <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 25 Jan 2005 18:45:47 -0000
        Subj:   SHK 16.0143 The Renaissance Horse": A Call for Contributors

[3]     From:   Michael B. Luskin <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 25 Jan 2005 11:01:50 EST
        Subj:   sense of sight


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           D Bloom <
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Date:           Tuesday, 25 Jan 2005 10:47:15 -0600
Subject: 16.0143 The Renaissance Horse": A Call for Contributors
Comment:        RE: SHK 16.0143 The Renaissance Horse": A Call for Contributors

Two comments: First, let's please withdraw the idea of "Third World"
which I innocently, but stupidly, used. It is simply too volatile a
term, and evidently does not convey what I was talking about.

Second: The scents of London in Shakespeare's time would presumably
result from garbage (food waste), dead animals, and human and animal
excrement - and not of industrial pollution which we find in much of the
modern world.

These former items are less familiar to us because of organized,
tax-funded disposal that attempts to keep them out of our yards,
streets, creeks, rivers and harbors, and dispose of them in ways that
primarily reduce their danger as epidemic-producing agents, but also
(incidentally) keep their aromas out of our noses.

Cities, which are mainly responsible for this process, have had various
levels of success with this idea. But I believe the European cities of
Shakespeare's time were remarkably backward in this regard, as compared
to some cities of antiquity and also to some cities contemporary with
them. (Does anyone have authentic information on this subject?)

Can we thus guess at what London would smell like by our encounters with
contemporary cities whose disposal systems are less than ideal and thus
more like London's?

Cheers,
don

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Martin Steward <
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Date:           Tuesday, 25 Jan 2005 18:45:47 -0000
Subject: The Renaissance Horse": A Call for Contributors
Comment:        SHK 16.0143 The Renaissance Horse": A Call for Contributors

In response to Hawkes's, "Subtle and complex communicative modes
involving a different ordering of all the senses--including smell--were
undoubtedly a feature of the culture which produced Shakespeare," Bill
Godshawlk contends, Hawkes-like, that "'Undoubtedly' is a word that
should not be in our critical jargon."

But just as important as "undoubtedly" is the word following it - the
indefinite, rather than the definite, article.

As such, Hawkes's statement does not ask us to accept that "Subtle and
complex communicative modes involving a different ordering of all the
senses" was the defining feature of the culture that produced Shakespeare.

However, one must then wonder whether or not the statement says anything
much at all. After all, "Subtle and complex communicative modes
involving a different ordering of all the senses" are undoubtedly a
feature of the culture that produced Robert Parker.

It all feels a bit fishy to me, if that's the expression.

m

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Michael B. Luskin <
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Date:           Tuesday, 25 Jan 2005 11:01:50 EST
Subject:        sense of sight

 >The decisive privileging of the sense of
  >sight-a consequence of the development of literacy--
  >is a relatively recent development.

Many anthropologists believe that sight is the most important of our
senses, and that a great deal of human evolution was sight related.
Sight would not have evolved into the incredibly complex and ubiquitous
sense that it is, across cultures, across species, if it were not more
valuable and hence more selected for than anything else.

Michael B. Luskin

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