Make a Donation

Consider making a donation to support SHAKSPER.

Subscribe to Our Feeds

Current Postings RSS

Announcements RSS

Home :: Archive :: 2005 :: March ::
Date of King John
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 16.0473  Monday, 14 March 2005

[1]     From:   Bob Grumman <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Friday, 11 Mar 2005 10:43:32 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 16.0464 Date of King John

[2]     From:   William Godshalk <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Friday, 11 Mar 2005 17:16:41 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 16.0464 Date of King John


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Bob Grumman <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Friday, 11 Mar 2005 10:43:32 -0500
Subject: 16.0464 Date of King John
Comment:        Re: SHK 16.0464 Date of King John

 >Heavens, man, read the thing before giving an opinion about what it
 >might or mightn't prove. You sound daft dismissing it unread.

Actually, you sound daft claiming I am dismissing it unread rather than
stating what I stated about the meanings of "proving something" and
"conclusively."

 >The distinction you make between scientific and historical proof is
 >vulnerable from several angles at once, and on consideration I think
 >you'll find you don't mean it. Take the simplest objection:
 >when a scientist writes up an experiment, she is giving an account of
 >the (recent) historical past. If you think that nothing can be proven
 >about the historical past, you don't think she's capable of proving
 >anything.

There's a difference between a replicable experiment and an event in
what most people take to be history.  I'm not getting further into it
than that.

 >Also, there's nothing inherently subjective about stylistic evidence.
 >That some stylometricians falsely claim that they are working with
 >purely objective data is not a good reason to leap to the opposite claim.
 >
 >Gabriel Egan

I am making the simple distinction between the objective evidence of a
letter by an Elizabethan that says Peele wrote such-and-such, and
someone's opinion that some line in a play sounds like Peele.  The
latter can be persuasive--but not CONCLUSIVE.

--Bob G.

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           William Godshalk <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Friday, 11 Mar 2005 17:16:41 -0500
Subject: 16.0464 Date of King John
Comment:        Re: SHK 16.0464 Date of King John

 >Gabriel Egan correctly points out:
 >
 > there's nothing inherently subjective about stylistic evidence.

Gabriel might have gone a bit further and pointed out that there is
nothing at all "inherent" in stylistic evidence, or, indeed, evidence in
general. Bill Ingram in The Business of Playing makes a nice distinction
between "data" and "fact."  For "data" read "evidence." For "fact" read
"interpretation." All facts are subjective interpretations of data.  As
Stephen Jay Gould famously pointed out, there are no signs in nature
saying "evolution going on here." The theory of evolution was developed
from an interpretation of raw data. Either that, or it was a good guess
on Darwin's part.

Of course, one may argue that stylistic evidence is not raw. A human (or
if you prefer a "subjectivity") has collected stylistic evidence with
the hypothesis that this evidence will help us to determine
Shakespeare's writing style. If the data were collected by a skeptic,
would it be presented in the same form as it would be presented by a
true believer?

Bill Godshalk

_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, 
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
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.
 

©2011 Hardy Cook. All rights reserved.