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Home :: Archive :: 2013 :: June ::
Desdemona Unpinning

 

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 24.0310  Monday, 24 June 2013

 

[1] From:        Alfredo Michel Modenessi < This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it >

     Date:         June 21, 2013 12:49:35 PM EDT

     Subject:     Re: SHAKSPER: Desdemona Unpinning 

 

[2] From:        Annie Martirosyan < This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it >

     Date:         Friday, June 21, 2013 3:38 PM

     Subject:     Desdemona 

 

 

[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------

From:        Alfredo Michel Modenessi < This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it >

Date:         June 21, 2013 12:49:35 PM EDT

Subject:     Re: SHAKSPER: Desdemona Unpinning 

 

Donne knew what to ‘unpin’, at least in the case of “His Mistris Going to Bed”: 

 

“Unpin that spangled breastplate which you wear

That th’eyes of busie fooles may be stopt there.” (7-8)

 

Would a ‘breastplate’ be a suitable candidate?

 

Cheers!

 

Alfredo.

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------

From:        Annie Martirosyan < This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it >

Date:         Friday, June 21, 2013 3:38 PM

Subject:     Desdemona

 

An interesting local development regarding Desdemona. Nothing to do with “unpinning” but the posts on the latter brought to mind this strange connotative extension:

 

In Armenia, if you happen to see a woman with a lot of tangled curly hair, you can call her “a Desdemona”! I cannot recall Desdemona being described as with a lot of tangled hair (I should add, also untidy, given that the expression has a pejorative connotation, but it is not especially offensive). Also, if a woman’s name is Desdemona she may be an object of childish derision because of the strange associations and the rareness of the name in Armenia. Desdemona’s depiction is one of the most beautiful female portrayals in Shakespeare, so I construe this weird pejorative local connotation is an influence from the Soviet film of Othello (I do vaguely remember something). As Othello prepares to kill her, the actress playing Desdemona appears with her mass of curly, tangled hair about her shoulders (also because it was bed-time). 

 

You can imagine a mother calling her daughter “a Desdemona” as she sits down for breakfast with her messed up curls, right from the bed. It seems I remember some Desdemonian vestiges from my childhood too!

 

Gramercy!

 

With all good wishes,

Annie

 
 

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