The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 11.1212  Tuesday, 13 June 2000.

From:           Mike Jensen <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Monday, 12 Jun 2000 09:08:15 -0700
Subject: Re: Fathers & Mothers
Comment:        SHK 11.1186 Re: Fathers & Mothers

I'm not sure what Kris McDermott called "the 'practical theatricality'
argument for the absence of mothers makes perfect sense" to me.  I note
older women in All's Well, RII, 2HIV, RIII, as well as Cor (mentioned by
Larry Weiss), and other plays.  I seem to remember a couple of mothers
in R&J, though they need not be old.  Cast your net outside of
Shakespeare and Middleton's Mad World suggests itself, if my memory
serves.  Don't even think about counting the elderly in Massinger's The
Old Law.  Some of these characters are mothers, some not. Any older
female character tends to argue against stopping our inquiry because of
practical considerations.

These women are occasionally mothers of major characters, as in All's
Well, RIII, and Mad World.  Sometimes they are the mothers of minor
characters, as in RII.  Sometimes they are not mothers.  If memory
serves, Doll alludes to no children in 2HIV.  Sometimes they are major
characters as in Cor and The Old Law.

I believe Analisa Castaldo's question deserves further consideration.

Mike Jensen

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