The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 16.1421 Tuesday, 30 August 2005
Date: Tuesday, 30 Aug 2005 02:13:34 -0700
Subject: Brian Vickers in TLS, Wm Niederkorn in NYT
Two articles in the semi-popular press present clashing views of
Shakespeare, both by way of reviewing recent books. Brian Vickers'
article/review in the TLS two weeks ago gets a response today from the
NYT's resident Oxfordian, William S. Niederkorn: "Brian Vickers--the
dean of Shakespeare scholars...--gives a kind of fire-and-brimstone
academic sermon attacking the Shakespeare-must-have-been-someone-else
Vickers packs a lot of evidence in a short space, and Niederkorn fires
shots in all directions (including the latest edition of The Oxford
Shakespeare, for including a scene from Sir Thomas More). Curiously,
their conclusions make the same point:
Vickers: "[Scott] McCrea recognizes that, despite his subtitle, 'there
can never be an end to the Authorship Question', a depressing prospect..."
Niederkorn: "On both sides of the authorship controversy, the arguments
are conjectural...Meanwhile, and it could be a very long meanwhile,
perhaps an eternal meanwhile, things will continue as they are. Or
perhaps not. What if authorship studies were made part of the standard
Vickers' "Why Not Shakespeare?" is still online at
http://www.the-tls.co.uk/this_week/story.aspx?story_id=2111727 He reviews:
--Peter Dawkins, _The Shakespeare Enigma_
--Alex Jack, ed., _Hamlet, by Christopher Marlowe and William
--Richard Malim, ed., _Great Oxford: Essays on the Life and Works of
Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford_
--Scott McCrea, _The Case for Shakespeare: The end of the Authorship
Some of these titles may only be available in the UK at the moment.
(Note to Firefox users: In both regular and print views, Vickers'
article breaks off in the middle of the sixth paragraph; in fact, it
goes on for another 14 paragraphs, and may be viewed in full using
Niederkorn's article, with the amazingly one-sided headline, "The
Shakespeare Code, and Other Fanciful Ideas From the Traditional Camp,"
is available for another week or so:
http://www.nytimes.com/2005/08/30/books/30shak.html He lightly reviews:
--James Shapiro, _1599: A Year in the Life of William Shakespeare_
--Stephen Greenblatt, _Will in the World_ (now in paperback)
--Clare Asquith, _Shadowplay: The Hidden Beliefs and Coded Politics of
--Mark Anderson, _'Shakespeare' by Another Name: The Life of Edward de
Vere, Earl of Oxford, the Man Who Was Shakespeare_
If anyone can't access either or both of these articles, please email me.
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