The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.2449 Thursday, 25 October 2001
Date: Thursday, 25 Oct 2001 09:13:59 +0100
Subject: The British Shakespeare Association
Since Graham Hall has mentioned the plans for a British Shakespeare
Association, here's the article more or less in the form in which it
went into the RSC's magazine:
The British Shakespeare Association
Question: What would you find in Norway and Japan, India and France,
Germany and the USA and dozens more countries but not in the UK?
Answer: A Shakespeare Association.
In Germany the Deutsche Shakespeare Gesellschaft is over 150 years old.
In America the annual meeting of the Shakespeare Association of America
attracts over 800 delegates. Here? Nothing. Yet.
It's time to change. On 2-3 February 2002, at the Shakespeare Institute
in Stratford-upon-Avon there will be a conference on 'Shakespeare and
Britain' to inaugurate the British Shakespeare Association. It's backed
by the RSC, Shakespeare's Globe and the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust as
well as the Institute itself.
What's the conference for?
Professor Peter Holland, Director of the Shakespeare Institute and Chair
of the Steering Committee for the fledgling BSA, describes its purposes:
This conference has two purposes:
(i) to explore the history, the present and the future of Shakespeare
and Britain and
(ii) to establish a British Shakespeare Association.
The two purposes are intertwined. There are national Shakespeare
Associations across the world but there is no British Shakespeare
Association. It is time to create one. It will be up to the conference
to decide what kind of organisation to establish but we hope it will be
for a wide range of people: for school teachers in primary and secondary
education, for theatre-workers and theatre- goers, for undergraduate and
graduate students, for academics and for the thousands of members of
that complex body 'the general public' who are interested in
Shakespeare's works. It will be up to the conference to decide what the
BSA will do but we hope it will set up conferences and newsletters, hold
weekend events and practical workshops, help with the dissemination of
information about Shakespeare on stage and film, about books and
articles on his works, about new editions and web-sites, about ways of
teaching and ways of learning. We hope the BSA's work will interest
anyone and everyone with an interest in Shakespeare, and, above all,
that it will stimulate discussion, education and the enjoyment of his
The next stage will be up to the people who come to the conference or
join the mailing-list. For more details write to The British Shakespeare
Association, The Shakespeare Institute, Church Street,
their website www.britishshakespeare.ws
For SHAKSPERians who would like a few more details, speakers at the
conference include Jonathan Bate, Peter Donaldson, Terence Hawkes, Jean
Howard, John Joughin, Ania Loomba, Willy Maley, Kathleen McLuskie, Carol
Rutter, Kiernan Ryan, Ann Thompson, Stanley Wells. And the conference
cost is a very modest 30 pounds (20 for students).
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