2005

In memoriam

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 16.1372  Wednesday, 24 August 2005

From: 		Hardy M. Cook <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Wednesday, August 24, 2005
Subject: 	In memoriam: Professor Emeritus Sheldon Paul Zitner

University of Toronto -- News@UofT -- (Aug 22/05)
In memoriam: Professor Emeritus Sheldon Paul Zitner

Professor emeritus Sheldon Paul Zitner of English at Trinity College 
died of
complications from intestinal surgery April 26. He was 81 years old.

Professor Emeritus Sheldon Paul Zitner, 1924-2005

Born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1924, Zitner served in the Pacific during 
the Second World War, returning to finish his BA at Brooklyn College, 
then taking an MA at New York University and a PhD at Duke University. 
He taught for six years at Hampton Institute, a black college in 
Virginia, and for 12 years at Grinnell, a liberal arts college in Iowa, 
where he became chair of the English department and of the division of 
humanities as well as the Carter-Adams Professor of Literature. In 1969 
he joined the English department at Trinity College.  Early in his 
career, in the 1960s, he collaborated on two books that taught the 
mysteries of new criticism and wrote a third on literary scholarship. 
His own work remained exemplary in both these modes: in addition to 
definitive editions of Spenser's Cantos of Mutabilitie, Beaumont's The 
Knight of the Burning Pestle and Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing, 
he published the standard book-length commentary on All's Well That Ends 
Well and important critical articles on Hamlet, Richard II and King 
Lear, among other texts. Whatever he published was, in the words of one 
particular review, "strikingly original and subtle." While his primary 
research centred on Shakespeare and Renaissance drama, he pursued a 
strong interest in critical theory - Aristotle as well as 20th-century 
practitioners - and also in North American, British and European 
contemporary poetry. He had a profound knowledge of Western rt history 
and Japanese prints and found much joy in the pieces he collected over 
the years.  In recognition of his brilliant teaching Trinity College 
awarded him an honorary doctor of sacred letters degree in 2001. "His 
classes were intellectually penetrating, remarkable in their breadth and 
leavened with unforgettable, often acerbic, wit," said Professor 
Emeritus Nancy Lindheim, a long-time friend and colleague. "Many of his 
students became lifelong friends. And his friendship brought notable 
pleasures: he was an astonishingly gifted conversationalist whose 
stories were filled with extraordinary old friends, wicked observations 
and the remembered tastes of fine meals. He was on everybody's guest list."

After retiring in 1989, Zitner turned to writing poetry, a passion he 
had abandoned after success in placing various poems during the 1950s. 
The result was three published books of verse: The Asparagus Feast< 
(1999), Before We Had Words (2002) and, posthumously, The Hunt on the 
Lagoon (2005). The three titles roughly indicate his strengths and 
concerns: sensuous engagement with the world, introspective probing of 
complex human bonds and illuminations offered to us by art (the last is 
a painting by Carpaccio). He also translated into verse a volume of 
modern Chinese poetry assembled by a friend, now under consideration by 
a university press.

"Even at 'fourscore and upward,'" Lindheim said, "his life was cut off 
too soon."

A memorial will be held Sept. 17 at Seeley Hall, Trinity College, at 3 
p.m. Colleagues, friends and students are invited to attend.

_______________________________________________________________
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Shylock as Suffering Servant

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 16.1371  Tuesday, 23 August 2005

[1] 	From: 	Joachim Martillo <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Monday, 22 Aug 2005 09:14:37 EDT
	Subj: 	Re: SHK 16.1360 Shylock as Suffering Servant

[2] 	From: 	JD Markel <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Monday, 22 Aug 2005 12:16:08 -0700 (PDT)
	Subj: 	Re: SHK 16.1352 Shylock as Suffering Servant

[3] 	From: 	D Bloom <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Monday, 22 Aug 2005 15:10:09 -0500
	Subj: 	RE: SHK 16.1360 Shylock as Suffering Servant

[4] 	From: 	Scot Zarela <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Tuesday, 23 Aug 2005 14:21:58 -0700
	Subj: 	Re: SHK 16.1360 Shylock in "The Merchant of Venice"


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		Joachim Martillo <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Monday, 22 Aug 2005 09:14:37 EDT
Subject: 16.1360 Shylock as Suffering Servant
Comment: 	Re: SHK 16.1360 Shylock as Suffering Servant

 >What intrigues me here is what probably intrigued Will Shakespeare when
 >he penned his portrayal of the money-lenders in MOV.  Recall that Jesus
 >drove the money-lenders out of The Temple.  Recall that Jesus disputed
 >with the lawyers in The Temple.  Recall that Jesus admonished his
 >disciple who cut off the ear of a Roman to save The Savior's life.  Read
 >the Epiphany of Christology, the famous Sermon on The Mount: KJV,
 >Matthew, C 5-7, in particular, 38-40, 44-45, 48, from Will Shakespeare's
 >Savior, the words of  Jesus,

Jesus did not drive money lenders out of the Temple.  He drove money 
changers out.  The Herodian Temple elite was involved in many 
inappropriate activities, but money lending was not one of them.

Joachim Martillo

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		JD Markel <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Monday, 22 Aug 2005 12:16:08 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: 16.1352 Shylock as Suffering Servant
Comment: 	Re: SHK 16.1352 Shylock as Suffering Servant

Larry said:

 >"There are one or two SHAKSPERians who have come close
 >to saying that Shylock should have been allowed to
 >butcher Antonio, but I surely hope they are not "just
 >about everyone."

Fair enough.  By "result" I erroneously assumed you meant the result 
Shylock received.

But on Antonio, yes, I think the oft imagined "Elizabethan Audience" 
would have liked to have seen Antonio go under the knife.

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		D Bloom <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Monday, 22 Aug 2005 15:10:09 -0500
Subject: 16.1360 Shylock as Suffering Servant
Comment: 	RE: SHK 16.1360 Shylock as Suffering Servant

I may, of course, as Ed Taft claims, always be wrong (although I hope 
not for his sake because I occasionally agree with him), but my goal is 
not to make the plays simple but coherent. The likelihood or validity of 
an interpretation depends on how well it accounts for the facts of the 
work. Contrariwise, if a theory seems to ignore or twist or create facts 
that really aren't there, then I find it that much less likely.

Another way of looking at it is to say, to what degree is the 
interpretation a rational and coherent experience of the work, and to 
what degree a projection of inner psychological needs onto it by the 
interpreter? (I am not, I realize, exempt from this questioning.)

Now, I discovered some time ago that I have a particular liking for 
romantic comedies-LLL, MSND, MOV, MAAN, and AYLI especially. I like them 
as such for the same reasons: the zany situations that they develop, the 
attractiveness of the heroine (who is usually a very strong and 
intelligent person, and frequently witty), and the romantic resolution.

These plays are, of course, quite different from each other in other 
respects, and that, too, is part of their charm (at least to me). But 
when I encounter theories that suggest that they are not romantic 
comedies at all, I naturally find myself questioning those theories to 
consider their validity. Of course, I want them to be invalid, but 
knowing that bias, I try to counteract it rationally by looking at what 
such a theory does with the whole play. Is the theory coherent, and on 
what terms?

In the case of MOV there are some fairly obvious complications 
(difficulties, if you like) for the modern reader. The most important 
have to do with Shylock: his defense of himself (and his religion) 
against Antonio's insults; the matter of Jessica; and the pathos of his 
defeat in the trial scene. (There are others, of course.)

The question I had to ask myself was whether these complication turned 
what I thought of as a romantic comedy into the dark, bitter, and 
savagely ironic expression of the victory of evil over good that some 
theories held it be. I thought not, but I had to consider it. Re-reading 
the last two acts, I could not view them as anything except happy. Only 
a very strange (to me) definition of evil and good could make them 
anything else, but I had no doubt that people held it.

But if the ending is happy then the various questions about Shylock 
(among others) had to be resolved. The play could be coherent while 
exploring the nature of love and happiness, or coherent while expressing 
a bitter and cynical view of life, or incoherent. Rejecting both the 
latter two, I had to assure myself of the validity of the first.

To Ed this appears a simple, na


Shylock, Hamlet, et al.

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 16.1369  Tuesday, 23 August 2005

[1] 	From: 	Alan Pierpoint <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Monday, 22 Aug 2005 13:45:05 -0400
	Subj: 	Re: SHK 16.1358 Shylock, Hamlet, et al.

[2] 	From: 	V. K. Inman <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Monday, 22 Aug 2005 19:17:47 -0400
	Subj: 	Re: SHK 16.1358 Shylock, Hamlet, et al.

[3] 	From: 	Joseph Egert <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Tuesday, 23 Aug 2005 19:59:26 +0000
	Subj: 	Re: SHK 16.1358 Shylock, Hamlet, et al


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		Alan Pierpoint <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Monday, 22 Aug 2005 13:45:05 -0400
Subject: 16.1358 Shylock, Hamlet, et al.
Comment: 	Re: SHK 16.1358 Shylock, Hamlet, et al.

Kenneth Chan writes:  "Why then, you ask, have [Shakespeare's] messages 
been missed over the centuries?  The answer is surprisingly easy to 
state.  We miss [them] because we do not wish to hear them.  They hurt."

Point taken.  But I think there remains the danger that an interpreter 
of, say, Hamlet, may fearlessly embrace such a "message" and miss the 
larger point, or points.  I have in mind Olivier, whose interpretation 
perhaps reflected the disrepute into which
hand-wringing inaction in the face of crisis had fallen, post holocaust 
and WWII.  As I recall, his film begins with the "So oft it chances in 
particular men" speech in voiceover and proceeds to state, baldly, that 
the play is about a man who can't make up his mind.  That view once had 
currency and has textual support throughout the play.  But it led, I 
think, to a reductive interpretation of the role, and an unsatisfying 
film.   -Alan Pierpoint

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		V. K. Inman <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Monday, 22 Aug 2005 19:17:47 -0400
Subject: 16.1358 Shylock, Hamlet, et al.
Comment: 	Re: SHK 16.1358 Shylock, Hamlet, et al.

Kenneth Chan writes:

 >This failure to confront our own mortality is one reason why we have
 >missed the meaning of Hamlet for so long. We miss it because the message
 >hurts and we do not wish to hear it.

V. K. Inman responds:

This sounds like a personal attack.  Are you saying since you are able 
to confront your own mortality and I am not, you understand Hamlet and I 
do not?

Kenneth Chan writes:

 >rashly leaping to the conclusion that Shakespeare intended his plays as
 >mere fodder for multiple conflicting interpretations.

V. K. Inman responds:

This is an egregious overstatement.  No one is 'rashly leaping' and no 
one has even remotely implied that Shakespeare intended his plays as 
'mere fodder'!

Such statements belong in the realm of Madison Avenue advertising and 
Washington politics.

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		Joseph Egert <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Tuesday, 23 Aug 2005 19:59:26 +0000
Subject: 16.1358 Shylock, Hamlet, et al
Comment: 	Re: SHK 16.1358 Shylock, Hamlet, et al

Fellow resolutes:

Myth and mystery surround the birth of young Hamlet.

In a a play teeming with allusions to bastard-born and incest-bred gods 
and mortals, demi and im, surely Hamlet's own legitimacy becomes deeply 
suspect to us and to himself.

WHO then is Hamlet's father?

Fasten your diving suits, crew--we're going down below.

Is Hamlet's natural father Polonius?

Polonius after all played "the mighty Julius" assassinated by his 
natural(?) son Brutus. Hamlet goes on to smite Polonius as Old Hamlet 
smote the Polacks. Are the Prince and Ophelia then brother and sister by 
half, born to the same father, be he Polonius, Claudius, or Old Hamlet 
himself? If so. has Ophelia succumbed to Hamlet's advances? Would she in 
time have tendered Polonius a "fool" had not her culture-bound gown 
dragged her down to a watery grave. Shown "the steep and thorny way to 
heaven" by her departing brother Laertes, Ophelia cautions him to reck 
his own "rede" in Paris, home of lusty chivalry. Has Hamlet, in this 
hall of mirrors, recked his own rede in preaching to Gertrude? Has the 
Prince impressed the "signet in my purse" upon docile Ophelia (another 
Caelia?) to sire yet another counterfeit? (The Prince's forgery may echo 
the DONATION OF CONSTANTINE  with its healing of the Emperor's leprosy, 
a forgery exposed by the Humanist Valle as a crude attempt by the 
Catholic Church to usurp temporal authority--an allusion perhaps to 
Tudor usurpation of religious authority.)

Is Claudius Hamlet's natural father?

Claudius more than once calls Hamlet "son," the object of a "dearest 
father['s]" love. Arthurian lore (favored propoganda of the Tudor 
Henries) suffuses this play. The worldly Centaur-like Norman cavalier 
Lamord/Lamond may recall Malory's LE MORTE D'ARTHUR as well as the 
Bastard Conqueror William . The three generations of Arthur's line (from 
Uther to Arthur to Mordred) are here condensed into two, but expanded 
laterally into multiple parent/child dyads. In Thomas Hughes' earlier 
play, THE MISFORTUNES OF ARTHUR (1588), Uther, magically assuming the 
Duke of Cornwall Gorlois' shape, impregnates the latter's wife with the 
noble bastard Arthur before murdering the Duke. Cornwall's ghost, like 
that of Old Hamlet, cries out for revenge. Arthur then incestuously 
sires the avenger Mordred (like Hamlet, both son and nephew to the king) 
through his sister Anna Morgause. For this sin Arthur is cuckolded by 
his wife Guinevere and son Mordred, leading to the death of both father 
and son in personal combat. The myths, both classical and medieval, are 
filled with fathers, often usurpers themselves, contriving against their 
sons fated to overthrow them. Does "unworthiest siege" (Act4Sc7) recall 
the "Perilous Siege" of the Table Round? Does Hamlet's sea voyage to 
England (intended to kill him) echo the prophesied avenger Mordred's 
planned disposal at sea, still an infant? Is "Claudius" reminiscent of 
"King Claudas" in the Arthur legends? Does Gertrude, like Isolde, fail 
the magic cup's test of fidelity before succumbing to its poison? At 
play's end Gorlois' ghost is left standing and gloating over the end of 
Uther's line. Is young Hamlet, like Mordred, (each "subject to his 
birth") the avenging Sun god Helios, born at Solstice(?) of Hyperion and 
his sister Thaia, to overcome the wintry Claudian night?

Is Hamlet's birth a Nativity?

Marcellus illuminates the "Saviour's birth" in glowing colors. Does 
Hamlet come, like Jesus, to set the time right at the cost of his own 
mortal life. Like his Saviour, Hamlet begins his brief ministry at age 
thirty. Like Jesus at Gethsemane, Hamlet suffers intense relentless 
psychomachia. Has the devil indeed "assumed a pleasing shape" as Old 
Hamlet, armored in the "unholy suit" of war and imploring the "unholy 
suit" of blood revenge (His apparel hath indeed proclaimed the man). 
Medieval monk and Reforming humanist alike decried this death-linked 
honor code. Roger Ascham, Queen Elizabeth's tutor, impugned these 
chivalric values as nothing but "open manslaughter and bold bawdry." 
Like Satan at Gethsemane, the Ghost tempts Hamlet with absolute royal 
dominion-- only heed his commandment to slaughter Claudius. Or does 
Shakespeare, by including the Saviour's birth among so many bastard 
allusions, parody the Virgin Birth itself. Jesus, whose own purported 
ancestry included incest and adultery, then becomes the archetypal Good 
Bastard, spotlighted by the alienated bastard-born of England to counter 
their country's oppressive propoganda.

Reflecting its psychomachia,the play consistently opposes gods and 
demigods like Hercules to the passion-driven man-beasts, be they 
centaur, satyr, or mermaid. The Hercules analogy is especially apt. 
Zeus, in the shape of mortal Alcmena's husband Amphitryon, sires through 
her the Greek hero. Sound familiar? Still an infant, Hercules slays the 
serpents sent against him by Hera (the Centaurs' sponsor). His life is 
spent in heroic adventures, often overcoming wild man-beasts, like the 
drunken Centaurs, and restoring order, though he too is subject to 
murderous fits of madness. In the end, his mortal half succumbs to 
poison originating from his own arrow, the revenge of a slain Centaur 
inadvertently aided by young Lichas (Laertes?). Zeus raises up his now 
fully immortal son to Olympus, to be joined later perhaps by Jesus and 
Hamlet amid flights of angels.

Finally, the key to Hamlet's birth may lie in its timing. The 
Gravedigger stresses young Hamlet was born "that day that our last King 
Hamlet o'ercame Fortinbras." The Ghost wears "the very armour he had on/ 
When he the ambitious Norway combated." The primal crime of this drama? 
Yes. A foul unnatural murder "as in the best it is"? Yes. But is there more?

Shakespeare scatters his clues throughout the play. Hamlet speaks of his 
"prophetic" "immortal" soul. The Ghost labels the official version of 
his death a "forged process." Hamlet calls his own forgery a "changeling 
never known."

Changeling?

Has the "fairy" taken? Has the "planet" struck? Has the "witch" charmed?

On that fateful day of Hamlet's birth the immortal soul of slaughtered 
King Fortinbras migrated across the sea, infusing itself into the 
newborn Prince, now an avenger destined to bring down the Danish royal 
house and restore the Fortinbras line to power. Plato believed the new 
host would not remember the soul's earlier lives. Is this vengeful soul 
that "vicious mole of Nature" fated to overcome Hamlet's Wittenberg 
conscience? The Old Ghost is himself a forged process, called out in 
disguise by this prophetic reincarnated soul within. "Lamord" may recall 
the "Lemures", the unexorcised Roman spirits of the dead. For Old 
Fortinbras, like Gorlois at play's end, the time has at last been set right.

Regards,
Joe Egert

_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, This email 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 
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Roses

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 16.1370  Tuesday, 23 August 2005

[1] 	From: 	Larry Weiss <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Monday, 22 Aug 2005 14:12:26 -0400
	Subj: 	Re: SHK 16.1359 Roses

[2] 	From: 	Alan Horn <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Monday, 22 Aug 2005 17:49:30 EDT
	Subj: 	Re: SHK 16.1359 Roses


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		Larry Weiss <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Monday, 22 Aug 2005 14:12:26 -0400
Subject: 16.1359 Roses
Comment: 	Re: SHK 16.1359 Roses

"Through Sonnet 20, the poet tells how he must approach this self 
through a pure love, fitting for a godly higher angel sent by the Lord 
to all young men (and to young women too as an angelic young lady) at 
the age of twelve or thirteen, which is part of the allegory that the 
Sonnets as a whole present."

I see now,  it's a bar mitzvhah sermon.

"Any more questions, Larry, or anyone? "

I pass

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		Alan Horn <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Monday, 22 Aug 2005 17:49:30 EDT
Subject: 16.1359 Roses
Comment: 	Re: SHK 16.1359 Roses

Stuart Manger, citing my statement "The discovery of 'Shagspere' in the 
dedication would also seem to clear up another mystery: the nature of 
the relationship between the fair youth and the poet, and whether or not 
it was consummated," writes:

 >"Erm.... sorry, don't see why this 'clears it up'? You mean that no fair
 >youth could possibly fall for / be involved with / or know a guy with a
 >name like that? Or what? Yrs baffled of UK."

Stuart, had this come from an American I would simply have assumed they 
hadn't seen the Austin Powers movies. But as you claim to be writing 
from Britain, there's really no excuse that I can see.

Alan Horn

_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, This email 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.

Archbishop's Speech, Henry V

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 16.1368  Tuesday, 23 August 2005

From: 		Andy Jones <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Monday, 22 Aug 2005 22:13:38 -0300
Subject: 16.1319 Archbishop's Speech, Henry V
Comment: 	Re: SHK 16.1319 Archbishop's Speech, Henry V

 From H.R.Greenberg:

 >As background for my ongoing article about the SALIC LAW speech by
 >Canterbury at the beginning of Henry V, I am looking for small changes
 >in the Shakespearean text as opposed to major overhauls like Tate's.
 >A sentence or two.  Alterations in the actual text, not cutting.

Yes, some of these are interesting, aren't they? For example at line 77, 
editors from Pope to T. W. Craik in the 3rd edition Arden have emended 
"Tenth" in F to "Ninth" on grounds of historical accuracy: which is fair 
enough in its own way, although:

1. How can we be sure that Shakespeare didn't know that Holinshead was 
wrong, but chose to retain "Tenth" anyway for some poetic or figurative 
reason? Or, more pertinently:

2. Surely it is inconsistent to make the Ninth/Tenth change when we do 
not emend other lines which are historically inaccurate. No-one emends 
"Charlemagne" in the line 75 to "Charles the Bald" to avoid the nonsense 
that Charles the Great and Charlemagne (who in this context are one and 
the same person) was his own grandfather, as lines 75 to 77 are clearly 
telling us. Similarly, no-one changes lines 56 to 64, which appear to be 
telling us, in the face of all mathematical evidence, that 805-426=421.

Andy Jones

_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, This email 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.

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