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Home :: Archive :: 2005 :: June ::
Eight Hamlets
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 16.1062  Wednesday, 8 June 2005

[1]     From:   John Mahon <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 7 Jun 2005 13:20:10 -0400
        Subj:   RE: SHK 16.1057 Eight Hamlets

[2]     From:   Tom Rutter <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 7 Jun 2005 19:25:44 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 16.1057 Eight Hamlets

[3]     From:   Nancy Charlton <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 7 Jun 2005 12:45:14 -0700
        Subj:   Re: SHK 16.1057 Eight Hamlets

[4]     From:   David Bishop <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 7 Jun 2005 19:47:43 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 16.1057 Eight Hamlets


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           John Mahon <
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Date:           Tuesday, 7 Jun 2005 13:20:10 -0400
Subject: 16.1057 Eight Hamlets
Comment:        RE: SHK 16.1057 Eight Hamlets

My first thought for significant "Hamlet" criticism is the "Critical
Introduction" in Harold Jenkins's Arden edition of the play (1982), pp.
122-159.  This critical essay is incorporated into his "Introduction" to
the edition. Another essay of real merit is Maynard Mack's, which is
excerpted, I believe, in the Signet ed. of the play--I can't recall the
title of Mack's piece right now.

What a difficult task, trying to work with only eight names!

Good luck,
John Mahon
"The Shakespeare Newsletter"

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Tom Rutter <
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Date:           Tuesday, 7 Jun 2005 19:25:44 +0100
Subject: 16.1057 Eight Hamlets
Comment:        Re: SHK 16.1057 Eight Hamlets

 >James Joyce's discussion in Ulysses should not be overlooked. (Larry
Weiss)

Stephen Dedalus's discussion surely? Are we allowed to cite works by
fictional critics?

Tom Rutter

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Nancy Charlton <
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Date:           Tuesday, 7 Jun 2005 12:45:14 -0700
Subject: 16.1057 Eight Hamlets
Comment:        Re: SHK 16.1057 Eight Hamlets

Harold Bloom? The one who did a definitive essay on "Sir Patrick Spens"?

Nancy Charlton
dulce ridentem, dulcl loquentem

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           David Bishop <
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Date:           Tuesday, 7 Jun 2005 19:47:43 -0400
Subject: 16.1057 Eight Hamlets
Comment:        Re: SHK 16.1057 Eight Hamlets

Another group of interesting comments. Restricting this to the most
prominent eight is hard. One is tempted to expand in Hugh Grady's
direction, but the task begins to seem a bit overwhelming. I especially
like the suggestion of Joyce, though I don't think he makes it into the
top eight on grounds of influence.

As Sherri Fillingham says, Dover Wilson and Granville Barker are still
around, which is a significant achievement. I think Bradley still holds
pride of place from the early 20th century, though, and I doubt the
other two have as much weight today. GB may be read more by theater
people. They may also be reading Jan Kott more, which may help account
for the fact that he has not been mentioned. Is his day passed? As for
the also unmentioned Northrop Frye, perhaps he's lagging a bit and
should also be dropped. But in favor of whom? Wilson Knight? Terence
Hawkes? Lacan?

I think Bloom is unfashionable among academics, and more than
unfashionable, judging by the blanket condemnation he inspires. While
I'm not at all a Bloom believer, I still think he has some interesting
things to say, and writes with more energy than more conventional
academics, like Garber for example. It's a challenge to dig out what's
of value in him, as it is to separate the wheat from  the chaff in any
critic. But totally worthless? I doubt it. Anyone who comes out with a
book on Shakespeare and gets on Charlie Rose to talk about it has to
have some influence, even as a lightning rod. I will be criticizing
Bloom, but I can't ignore him.

Maybe I should line up the candidates and check their Amazon sales rank.
Though that wouldn't tell me the status of one Hamlet essay in a larger
book, with other considerations it might say something.

Best wishes,
David Bishop

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