2006

Reminder: TCP Conference Deadline May 15

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 17.0380  Wednesday, 3 May 2006

From: 		Shawn Martin <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Tuesday, 2 May 2006 11:11:09 -0400
Subject: 	Reminder: TCP Conference Deadline May 15

  [Apologies for cross posting]

Just a reminder that the deadline for submissions to the Text Creation 
Partnership Conference:  Bringing Text Alive: The Future of Scholarship, 
Pedagogy, and Electronic Publication is May 15 (original call below)

Please send an abstract of around 250 words to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or view 
the website at http://www.lib.umich.edu/tcp/conference or e-mail me 
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information.

Hopefully I'll look forward to seeing some of you in September.

Thanks,
Shawn

Call for Papers:
Bringing Text Alive:
The Future of Scholarship, Pedagogy, and Electronic Publication

The Text Creation Partnership (TCP) project was founded at the University 
of Michigan in 1999 to reinvent scholarship by creating fully searchable 
texts of thousands of titles printed across three hundred years and two 
continents of English and American history.

TCP includes texts selected from three commercially produced page image 
collections, Early English Books Online (EEBO), available from ProQuest 
Information and Learning, Evans Early American Imprints (Evans), available 
from Newsbank-Readex and Eighteenth Century Collections Online (ECCO), 
available from Thomson-Gale.  Additionally, TCP's production has expanded 
to include centers at Oxford University, the University of Toronto, and 
the National Library of Wales.  TCP cooperates directly with over a dozen 
international scholarly projects devoted to subjects as wide ranging as 
historical linguistics, literary studies, bibliographic studies, and 
metadata integration.  Scholars and students alike, in these disciplines 
and many others have found often make the claim that resources like EEBO, 
Evans, ECCO, and the TCP have revolutionized their work and by making 
primary sources widely available, will "bring literature alive" (Thomas 
Pack, E-Content, Dec. 1999).  As the TCP project reaches the halfway mark 
of its original goals, it seems a good time to investigate how it brings 
literature in all disciplines to life in this exciting conference.

The conference invites papers from scholars, students (graduate and 
undergraduate), librarians, publishers, or other interested people in all 
disciplines to investigate topics such as (but not limited to):
* Changes in the landscape of scholarship and pedagogy introduced by 
electronic resources like EEBO, Evans, ECCO, and the TCP
* Examples of teaching with such resources
* Examples of doing research with such resources
* Use of related resources like ESTC or Early American Newspapers
* The changing nature of scholarly communication
* Electronic publication
* Digital library development.

The conference will be held September 14 - 17, 2006 in Ann Arbor, MI
Deadline for paper submissions is May 15, 2006

For more information contact:
Shawn Martin
TCP Project Librarian
8076-B Hatcher S.
920 N. University Ave.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Phone: (734) 936-5611
Fax:     (734) 763-5080
e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Or visit the conference website http://www.lib.umich.edu/tcp/conference

For more information about the TCP project:
Visit the TCP website: http://www.lib.umich.edu/tcp
Or e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

_______________________________________________________________
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.

Dumbshows?

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 17.0379  Tuesday, 2 May 2006

[1] 	From: 	Peter Goldman <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Monday, 01 May 2006 11:51:53 -0600
	Subj: 	Re: SHK 17.0375 Dumbshows?

[2] 	From: 	Philip Tomposki <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Monday, 01 May 2006 19:55:23 -0400
	Subj: 	SHK 17.0375 Dumbshows?


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		Peter Goldman <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Monday, 01 May 2006 11:51:53 -0600
Subject: 17.0375 Dumbshows?
Comment: 	Re: SHK 17.0375 Dumbshows?

In regard to Claudius' apparent lack of reaction to the dumbshow, we 
have to realize, first, that the play itself does not raise this as an 
issue. There are no stage directions for Claudius at this point in the 
scene. Second, no one within the play itself directly comments on 
Claudius' reaction or lack thereof (although Hamlet's comments to 
Ophelia are relevant here).  As an undergraduate, I was taught that if 
something is important in a Shakespeare play, Shakespeare will emphasize 
it. After years of serious study and teaching, I see no reason to 
question this as a general principle. I cannot, therefore, see Claudius' 
apparent lack of reaction as a major problem.

Claudius' (apparent lack of) reaction to the dumbshow is a problem of 
staging. We all know that Shakespeare's plays are lacking in stage 
directions. At the original rehearsals, presumably he would be available 
to answer questions such as this.  I can see 3 possible ways to stage 
this. 1. Claudius talks to Gertrude or others, ignoring the dumbshow. 2. 
  Claudius grows increasingly uneasy during the dumbshow, squirming in 
his seat and etc. 3. Claudius sits in stony silence, because the stage 
emphasis is on Hamlet and Ophelia, not Claudius. I see all 3 three as 
acceptable interpretations, although I tend to favor #1. But what 
difference does it make? It's clear that Claudius reacts to the main 
play: rising, calling for light, and soon after attempting to pray for 
forgiveness. We need to keep things in perspective. It's not a Henry 
James novel, which painstakingly attempts to provide completely 
realistic, in-depth motivations for every minute action and character. 
Shakespeare is certainly capable of finely detailed, nuanced 
psychological portrayals, but he is not adverse to painting with a broad 
brush when it is appropriate to his dramatic conception. There's 
foreground and background, and hermeneutic methods appropriate to each.

~Peter

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		Philip Tomposki <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Monday, 01 May 2006 19:55:23 -0400
Subject: Dumbshows?
Comment: 	SHK 17.0375 Dumbshows?

Kenneth Chan wrote: "The choice we are faced with here is simply this: 
Are we to continue believing that Shakespeare deliberately made his own 
play inconsistent when there are no actual grounds for believing that he 
did so? Of course, you can still insist that Shakespeare deliberately 
planted an inconsistency if you want to; you are free to believe that. I 
seriously wonder, though, how many people would find that conclusion 
acceptable."

Not many, I suspect, but that's because most people are accustomed to 
the Disney/Hallmark-Hall-of-Shame dreck, with it's nicely 'consistent' 
themes and characters, neatly tied up in a pretty bow at the end of its 
two hours traffic on the screen.  Real art, the kind that S wrote, 
doesn't do that.  S wasn't a moral philosopher or a clinical 
psychologist, he was a playwright, a storyteller who understood that 
life was contradictory, paradoxical and, yes, inconsistent.  This is 
what he portrays on the stage, and I celebrate him for that reason.  I 
cannot image anything more tedious than a production that would adhere 
to a completely 'consistent' interpretation.

Philip Tomposki

_______________________________________________________________
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.

Characters

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 17.0377  Tuesday, 2 May 2006

[1] 	From: 	L. Swilley <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Monday, 1 May 2006 11:04:54 -0500
	Subj: 	Character

[2] 	From: 	Marvin Bennet Krims <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Monday, 1 May 2006 12:07:26 -0400
	Subj: 	RE: SHK 17.0373 Characters

[3] 	From: 	William Godshalk <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Monday, 01 May 2006 13:00:12 -0400
	Subj: 	Re: SHK 17.0373 Characters

[4] 	From: 	Michael Luskin <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Monday, 1 May 2006 13:20:22 EDT
	Subj: 	Reading into the characters

[5] 	From: 	Donald Bloom <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Monday, 1 May 2006 15:55:19 -0500
	Subj: 	RE: SHK 17.0373 Characters


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		L. Swilley <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Monday, 1 May 2006 11:04:54 -0500
Subject: 	Character

Peter Goldman writes,

 >... the only way one can
 >make any coherent sense out of a dramatic work is precisely on
 >the presupposition (a "willing suspension of disbelief") that the
 >fictional characters ARE persons (even if not "real" persons).

The distinction, "persons" from "real persons": the first is a 
psychological term, and language that well might be used to discuss a 
psychological type - as presented in the Psychology textbooks. These do 
not absolutely require the creation of a likely childhood - although I 
suppose one might create such a psychological probability, provided it 
is, with extreme caution, incorporated into the criticism of the play as 
a factor thereof, the other parts of the play clarified by such 
contributions.

But should we not avoid the term "person" altogether, and concentrate on 
Character, that organic dimension of the play that establishes 
particular constructs of intellectual and moral qualities that make the 
Plot reasonable and likely?

And, of course, as Mr. Goldman says, the characters are not "real 
persons"; otherwise we would all rush on to the stage to slap the 
bejasus out of that silly Lear and Cordelia, and to awaken Duncan and 
his guards.

Mr. Goldman continues,

 > . . . we can legitimately
 >ask about Claudius's remorse over the murder of Hamlet
 >because the play itself raises this as an issue. On the other
 >hand, one cannot legitimately speculate about Claudius'
 >childhood because nowhere does the play raise this as an
 >issue. Shakespeare's great achievement in the creation of
 >Hamlet is the illusion of a character with a virtually limitless
 >depth of personality, indeed seemingly greater than many
 >real people.

If the "manufacture" of the possible events Claudius' childhood help us 
to a better understanding of the *character's* function in the play, I 
cannot see how it can be disallowed. If Claudius is identified as a 
psychological "type" explained by application to a commonly experienced 
childhood of such types, we may, with some profit, examine such 
childhood conditions - but only if we can, through them, better 
understand the Character as an organic part of the play. (On the other 
hand, I think that our ranging into psychological dimensions before we 
have a firm grip on the organic argument of the work that defines 
Character exclusively by what the character says and does, and what is 
said about him, often distracts us from the play and sends us off too 
soon into realms that may be attractive but distorting.)

We must be as cautious in the addition of psychological information 
about the character as we should be about the addition of 
historical/biographical about him. And although the first has some 
critical validity, for it arises from the action of the *character*, the 
second has none because it infinitely alters the very vocabulary 
describing that character, and ultimately makes understanding and 
interpretation of the play impossible.  We may gather the notes on the 
*character* Julius Caesar and see the character's likeness to a 
psychological type; we may NOT, until after the play as written is 
understood, bring our knowledge of the historical person of Caesar to 
the terms of the play. At the end of the play, we may say, "This is how 
Shakespeare presented the historical Caesar"; we may NOT explain an 
event in the play as it progresses by application to some biographical 
fact about the real Caesar. To understand the *character* Julius Caesar 
in the play, we would be wise to call the characters A and B, or Jimmie 
Joe and Salley Fae, and avoid the temptation to bring in biographical 
information.

L. Swilley

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		Marvin Bennet Krims <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Monday, 1 May 2006 12:07:26 -0400
Subject: 17.0373 Characters
Comment: 	RE: SHK 17.0373 Characters

Well said, Peter.
	
If we cry on hearing of Ophelia's death, we cry not because of the 
literal words-on-the-page but because Shakespeare has created a real 
person in our minds, a person we have come to care about, take pity on 
and feel sad when she is no longer among those who live in our mind's eye.
	
Marvin
	
[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		William Godshalk <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Monday, 01 May 2006 13:00:12 -0400
Subject: 17.0373 Characters
Comment: 	Re: SHK 17.0373 Characters

In the following essay, I deal with some of the literary and 
philosophical problems of identifying squiggles on paper or screen as 
real people: "Shakespeare and the Problem of Literary Character" 
http://www.clas.ufl.edu/ipsa/journal/2005_godshalk01.shtml The essay may 
amuse some folks and infuriate others.

Bill

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		Michael Luskin <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Monday, 1 May 2006 13:20:22 EDT
Subject: 	Reading into the characters

It seems to me that Shakespeare developed three dimensional characters, 
other artists did somewhat less. Claudius is an INTERESTING personality, 
while the Jew of Malta is only striking.  We don't think much about the 
motivation of a tiger or an ameba, we only think about the motives of 
people.  The plot of Lear, in and of itself, is fascinating, the plot of 
Tamberlaine less so.

If we see a skyscraper, we can legitimately assume that it has a 
foundation, and civil engineers can make informed, important, and 
interesting (to them) surmises about that foundation.  In the same way, 
it is interesting to think about the personalities of Claudius and old 
Hamlet.  I would love to know more about Claudius.  Since it isn't in 
the play, I have to make do and supply it.  And of course it is 
essential that I do it in such as way that it legitimately extends or 
fleshes out what we do see in the play.

Where are the limits of what we can think about?  We see a fair amount 
about Claudius and remorse, and so we can talk about it a lot.  We see, 
fleetingly, a little about Claudius as a diplomat and a manipulator of 
people.  We can legitimately make surmises about his character in 
general, about how he spent his time when not in the play.

If we are constricted to think of them only as characters on the stage, 
we would not find them so interesting.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. very wisely wrote:

 >On the other hand, one cannot
 >legitimately speculate about Claudius' childhood because nowhere does
 >the play raise this as an issue. Shakespeare's great achievement in the
 >creation of Hamlet is the illusion of a character with a virtually
 >limitless depth of personality, indeed seemingly greater than many real
 >people.

I am still bothered by Hardy Cook's admonition to avoid plot personality 
motivation.  What else is there?  I can see, and accept, and even 
usually agree with not looking for the ultimate one word meaning of 
Hamlet or finding all the proof that Measure for Measure is a play about 
monetary policy, or seeing Shakespeare's Jewishness as the key to his 
plays.  But I am uncomfortable about his even saying that.  I in fact 
have learned a lot from both whoever it was that argued for Measure for 
Measure as a treatise on monetary policy, and from the people that find 
Jewishness in every word of Shakespeare.

I in fact learn more, and think more, about the extreme posts than I do 
from the "witty" one liners that certain people are addicted to.

[5]-------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		Donald Bloom <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Monday, 1 May 2006 15:55:19 -0500
Subject: 17.0373 Characters
Comment: 	RE: SHK 17.0373 Characters

Will Sharpe writes "I think the real root of this problem is the fact 
that baseless discussions about character motivation/backstory/is play A 
better than play B etc. are simply not situated at the cutting edge of 
scholarship in this field." He later explains that "If you don't think 
there is [an academic standard of engagement, a level which it is 
possible to operate on], go to some conferences, stay up-to-date on the 
publication of journals and books, get some idea of what's going on in 
the field (textual scholarship, cultural theory, performance criticism, 
inter-disciplinary work) and it will become apparent that discussions 
about Hamlet's character would be best taken to someone's Hamlet blog."

I have, as the phrase goes, some issues with these statements.

1) "Baseless" seems to put back everything that the rest of the sentence 
asserts should be left out of our discussions. Are we to talk of nothing 
but "textual scholarship, cultural theory, performance criticism, 
inter-disciplinary work" or not? Are we never to talk of "character 
motivation," or of character at all? Or can we talk only when these 
discussions are not baseless?

I agree that baseless discussions are a waste of time (and I would allow 
that several on this list became baseless before Hardy put the kibosh on 
them), but I see a problem in deciding precisely what is baseless. I 
know what I think is baseless but I also know that I am not all-wise.

If you want precision, then you can dispense with these discussions 
altogether, which is what the rest of the sentence suggests and the 
remark about "Hamlet blog" appears to confirm. But why then qualify the 
assertion with the word "baseless"?

2) Of what possible value are "textual scholarship, cultural theory, 
performance criticism, inter-disciplinary work" except to illuminate 
works that we find fascinating because of (among other things) their 
remarkable exploration of character motivation?

I may be wrong here. Perhaps people are deeply moved by textual 
scholarship itself, divorced from any insight it may give into the 
mythos, ethos and dianoia of a given work.

But I, for good or ill, am not.

Cheers,
don

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Stratford

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 17.0378  Tuesday, 2 May 2006

[1] 	From: 	Robin Hamilton <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Monday, 1 May 2006 20:54:01 +0100 (BST)
	Subj: 	Re: SHK 17.0361 Stratford

[2] 	From: 	Elliott Stone <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Monday, 1 May 2006 16:21:39 -0400
	Subj: 	Re: SHK 17.0374 Stratford

[3] 	From: 	Jinny Webber <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Tuesday, 02 May 2006 05:44:51 -0400
	Subj: 	Re: SHK 17.0374  Stratford

[4] 	From: 	David Schalkwyk <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
	Date: 	Tuesday, 2 May 2006 12:59:58 +0200
	Subj: 	Re: SHK 17.0369 Stratford


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		Robin Hamilton <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Monday, 1 May 2006 20:54:01 +0100 (BST)
Subject: 17.0361 Stratford
Comment: 	Re: SHK 17.0361 Stratford

 >Bring on the Berliner
 >Ensemble's Richard II.
 >
 >Brian Willis

Me, I'd rather see them perform +The Workers Rehearse the Uprising+ (in 
English translation).

Or is Brecht's dramatic mediation of +Coriolanus+ too politically edgy 
for these pallid times?

Robin Hamilton

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		Elliott Stone <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Monday, 1 May 2006 16:21:39 -0400
Subject: 17.0374 Stratford
Comment: 	Re: SHK 17.0374 Stratford

I have enjoyed all my trips to Stratford. The shopping is good, the pubs 
are plentiful, and the Shakespeare Theatre is excellent.

I also agree with Henry James, Mark Twain and Herman Melville that there 
is a little bit too much humbug in Stratford. How could anyone think 
otherwise?

Best,
Elliott H. Stone

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		Jinny Webber <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Tuesday, 02 May 2006 05:44:51 -0400
Subject: 17.0374  Stratford
Comment: 	Re: SHK 17.0374  Stratford

I happened in on the amazing German 'Othello' in Stratford last Friday 
night, followed by a talkback with Luk Perceval, the director, and the 
cast. Having brought a group of students to see the South African 
'Hamlet' the next day, I booked at the last moment and found the 
production imaginative, moving, and wonderfully theatrical: the 
essential drama without Shakespeare's poetry. Brutal language and an 
intense jazz piano takes the place of Iago's speeches to the audience 
and accentuate much else; Othello's white and much older than Desdemona 
and Emilia is the only black player (and very central); there's no 
tragic loading of the bed in the last scene. Of course such a production 
is not for everyone; even in Germany in the early days of the show 
people walked out. The Stratford audience stayed put and, so far as one 
could tell, entranced if occasionally shocked. I'm appreciative to the 
RSC for bringing the production for this brief run and feel lucky to 
have caught it. (Michael Billington gives it a good review in the April 
29 Guardian.)

Regards,
Jinny Webber

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		David Schalkwyk <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Tuesday, 2 May 2006 12:59:58 +0200
Subject: 17.0369 Stratford
Comment: 	Re: SHK 17.0369 Stratford

Terry Hawkes writes:

Brian Willis will know that I'm a patient man. But why on earth would a 
version of Othello, given in German, be of any interest to an audience 
in Stratford?

If they spoke German, Terry, they may actually hear the play for once...

David Schalkwyk

_______________________________________________________________
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.

Chandos Portrait Probably Genuine

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 17.0376  Monday, 1 May 2006

From: 		Elliott Stone <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Saturday, 29 Apr 2006 21:27:06 -0400
Subject: 17.0372 Chandos Portrait Probably Genuine
Comment: 	Re: SHK 17.0372 Chandos Portrait Probably Genuine

I would like to thank Mr. Kathman for his kind remarks that my ideas are 
rubbish and that the Martin Droeshout engraver was not the young man 
born in 1601.

I hope that he will go on to set the Encyclopedia Britannica, The 
Shakespeare Birthplace Trust and the Yale Center for British Art on the 
correct path. They all have recently posted statements that agree with 
me. I also still maintain, as I did earlier on this site, that an 
understanding of the Editorship of the First Folio will give scholars 
many new insights on the life and time of William Shakespeare.

Best,
Elliott H. Stone

_______________________________________________________________
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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