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Home :: Archive :: 2005 :: April ::
A Claudius Question
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 16.0655  Thursday, 7 April 2005

From:           Cheryl Newton <
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 >
Date:           Thursday, 07 Apr 2005 00:01:44 -0400
Subject: 16.0645 (A Claudius Question) barking bats & flapping dogs
Comment:        Re: SHK 16.0645 (A Claudius Question) barking bats & flapping dogs

 >I'm not saying this is right, all I'm saying is that it's possible to
 >stage a version of +Hamlet+ where the Prince isn't totally
 >bats-in-the-belfry barking mad.
 >>
 >        Been there, done that, bought the T-shirt.
 >>
 >It WORKS, and unless you want to dismiss the audience and elect
another  ...
 >>
 >            <sigh>
 >>
 >The Wee M'Greegor

I've seen productions with Hamlet as more distraught than mad (going for
the court defense of being under mental stress) or simply calm &
calculating.  Mostly they worked.  But the various characters make so
much reference to his changed disposition that I think the last 1/2 of
the play carries its own internal direction for Hamlet to be spiraling
out of control.  The only compelling argument for me to a strictly
rational approach is that Horatio, perhaps the most important
interpreter of Hamlet's behavior, seems to accept his friend's behavior
as put-on.

Drat, hmm.  I trust Horatio's judgement, so now I'll have to rethink the
entire process!

Cheryl

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