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Home :: Archive :: 2007 :: September ::
Redheads
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 18.0600  Wednesday, 12 September 2007

From: 		Peter Bridgman <
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Date: 		Monday, 10 Sep 2007 15:02:25 +0100
Subject: 18.0590 Redheads
Comment: 	Re: SHK 18.0590 Redheads

Bob Lapides writes ...

 >I wish Peter had said something about his mistaken reference
 >to them as "Palestinian Jews."

 From the Jewish Encyclopedia entry on Palestine:  "[Palestine] includes 
the whole of the country between the River Jordan and the Mediterranean 
as well as the country immediately to the east of the Jordan."

http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/view.jsp?artid=31&letter=P

This entry tells us that Josephus and Philo both used the term 
'Palestine' to refer to this whole area, rather than to just Phoenicia. 
  I think we are therefore justified in describing the Holy Family as 
'Palestinian.'

 >And I wish he had said why was it so easy to fold
 >Christian-approved Jews into other people's identities
 >or to "universalize" them, when Jewish villains remained
 >so theatrically Jewish?

I'm sorry but I don't agree that the visual traits assigned to Jewish 
villains are, or were, Jewish traits.  I think they were merely 
'villain' traits.  If we look at the two paintings of the Last Supper I 
cited earlier in this thread, we see that in both Judas is distinguished 
from the other apostles by the possession of red hair and a hooked nose ...

Hans Holbein the younger (c. 1520-4) 
http://www.wga.hu/art/h/holbein/hans_y/1525/10lastsu.jpg
Joos van Cleve (c. 1525-7)  http://www.wga.hu/art/c/cleve/joos/lament2.jpg

We have already established that there is nothing particularly Jewish 
about red-headedness.  Red hair is most common in north west Europe; it 
is relatively rare in the Middle East.  And we only have to look at the 
illustrations of nasty old witches in Grimms Tales or Disney movies to 
see that hooked noses are simply another "villain" trait ...

http://endicottstudio.typepad.com/endicott_redux/images/gretel_by_arthur_rackham.jpg
http://scoop.diamondgalleries.com/news_images/10423_29302_4.jpg

My apologies to any SHAKSPERians who feel this thread is going round in 
circles.

Peter Bridgman

[Editor's Note: It appears to me that this thread is approaching its 
useful conclusion. Let us please proceed to bring it to its end. Hardy]

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