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Home :: Archive :: 2009 :: May ::
Gary Taylor's Cardenio
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 20.0242  Monday, 18 May 2009

[1] From:   Arnie Perlstein <
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     Date:   Friday, 15 May 2009 15:20:35 -0400
     Subj:   Cardenio

[2] From:   William Godshalk <
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     Date:   Friday, 15 May 2009 21:50:56 -0400
     Subj:   RE: SHK 20.0228 Gary Taylor's Cardenio


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:       Arnie Perlstein <
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Date:       Friday, 15 May 2009 15:20:35 -0400
Subject:    Cardenio

"That said, the main problem I find in Arnie's argument is in its 
assumption that the attribution of TSMT has not been considered closely. 
It has been; and Hamilton's attribution to WS has been rejected 
universally. For example, as was pointed out in the earlier posts, Eliot 
and Valenza applied the same meticulous stylometric analysis to this 
play as they did to the rest of the apocrypha and dubitanda, and found 
that it was so foreign to Shakespeare as to reside in another literary 
galaxy."

As I took pains to say in my last post, Larry,  it is not that important 
to me whether Shakespeare was a co-author of TSMT or not. I was clear in 
distancing myself from Hamilton's praise for the quality of TSMT -- my 
personal sense is that if TSMT was the missing Cardenio registered in 
1613, then Shakespeare's actual role in its composition was minimal.

What matters to me, and what you did not address at all, was that the 
author of TSMT was very interested in Shakespeare's Hamlet and 
Cervantes's Don Quixote! So I ask again that you put aside the 
authorship controversy, and say what you think about the aspect of TSMT 
that I did focus on!

"If Arnie goes back to what I said he will find that I was not making a 
point that rapid-fire killings are foreign to Shakespeare. Instead, I 
was pointing out that such events are not hallmarks of romances. 
Hamilton argued that TSMT was a romance, akin to Pericles, Cymbeline, 
Winter's Tale and The Tempest, so it fit in the last period of 
Shakespeare's career, when Cardenio was supposedly written. The one 
thing TSMT is not is a romance."

Again, Larry, you are so focused on the authorship controversy that you 
misunderstood MY meaning, which had nothing to do with the authorship 
question! I was responding to your argument that "The Second Maiden's 
Tragedy IS GENERALLY A POOR PLAY, not up to the worst of WS's early 
output. It is as Senecan as Titus Andronicus. In Act III the heroine 
happily commits suicide to prevent her abduction, and her lover 
gleefully murders a minor character. Then, in V.i, there are five 
killings within the space of twenty-five lines. The rapid-fire deaths 
EVOKED NOTHING BUT LAUGHTER from the audience at a performance I attended."

I was somewhat playfully responding to your comments on the poor quality 
of TSMT by pointing out that a concentrated episode containing multiple 
killings is not itself per se evidence of low quality of dramatic 
writing, with Exhibit A being Act V, scene 2 of Shakespeare's Hamlet (a 
play which, again, I claim the author of TSMT was very focused on).

Again, I am much less interested in the question of whether Shakespeare 
was, or was not, one of the authors of TSMT, than I am in the question 
of how TSMT (regardless of whether it is the missing Cardenio, and 
regardless of who actually wrote it) sheds contemporary light on Hamlet 
and Don Quixote.

Arnie

[2]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:       William Godshalk <
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Date:       Friday, 15 May 2009 21:50:56 -0400
Subject: 20.0228 Gary Taylor's Cardenio
Comment:    RE: SHK 20.0228 Gary Taylor's Cardenio

Larry Weiss notes Mac Jackson's attribution of "portions of Arden of 
Feversham to Shakespeare." Actually Mac repudiated that attribution some 
while ago on this very forum.

Bill

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