The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 10.0506  Monday, 22 March 1999.

From:           Robert Miola <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Friday, 19 Mar 1999 11:54:09 -0500
Subject:        Minola's Shakespeare's Rome

16 March 1999

Dear Editors,

I was surprised to discover that Professors Graham Holderness, Bryan
Loughrey and Andrew Murphy have reprinted as the last chapter in their
collection, Shakespeare: The Roman Plays (London and New York: Addison,
Wesley Longman Ltd., 1996), 169-84, the last chapter  (with some
omissions) of my book Shakespeare's Rome (Cambridge Univ. Press, 1983),
206-35.  They attribute this piece, "Cymbeline: Beyond Rome," to Paul A.
Cantor, author of Shakespeare's Rome: Republic and Empire  (1976) in the
table of contents, acknowledgements of permission to reprint,
introduction, headnote and ascription under the title, and the notes on

Professors Holderness, Loughrey, and Murphy add insult to injury.  They
chop paragraphs and accompanying footnotes out of the argument, usually
but not always marking the omissions (the last sentence is patched on
without ellipses to the preceding paragraph).  They inaccurately
transcribe one footnote (my 16 their 10).  What makes all this
particularly galling or amusing is the use to which they put my essay in
their volume.  The editors want to illustrate all the recent
"exceptionally fruitful" (2) shifts in critical emphasis; they want to
reread texts in "new and challenging ways"; they want to feature critics
who "fall within the New Historicist/Culturalist Materialist critical
spectrum" (3).  My essay (under Cantor's name) is offered as a contrast,
as "a very traditional piece of criticism which leaves unexamined its
own political foundations and assumptions" (13).  Though the headnote
seems to endorse my consideration of Cymbeline as a Roman play, the
editors elsewhere dismiss its author "almost as a kind of na 

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