The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 23.0427  Monday, 22 October 2012


From:        Steve Urkowitz <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         October 21, 2012 9:46:04 PM EDT



KING JOHN in Staunton, VA, and Chesapeake Shakespeare RICHARD III


I’m off to Staunton, VA, this weekend for an American Shakespeare Center board meeting and a rare opportunity to see on Sunday afternoon a production of KING JOHN.  The play was the first that I learned to read “fine-screen” theatrically, and this troupe of ASC players work magic every time I see them.  Also, on Friday near Baltimore, I’ll be giving a pre-play talk for the Chesapeake Shakespeare Company’s production of Richard III.  

American Shakespeare Center:


Chesapeake Shakespeare Company:


Steve Urkowitz

Shakespeare 450: Call for Program Proposals


The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 23.0426  Monday, 22 October 2012


From:        Yan Brailowsky <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         October 20, 2012 7:40:30 AM EDT

Subject:     Shakespeare 450: Call for Program Proposals


SHAKESPEARE 450: Call for Program Proposals

21-27 April 2014, Paris


The Société française Shakespeare is organizing in Paris a week-long conference from 21-27 April 2014 to coincide with the 450th anniversary of Shakespeare’s birth. The program will include plenary lectures, roundtables, workshops, seminars, panels, along with performances at various venues, theatres, concert halls, museums, libraries, artists’ studios and bookshops.


The conference is backed by a large number of French and international institutions and organizations.


The international organizing committee welcomes seminar, workshop or panel proposals on all aspects of Shakespeare’s works, their reflections in painting, sculpture, opera, on radio and screen, as well as issues of performance, critical theory, poetics, commemorations, textual and scenic rewritings, translation, biography.


For 2014, panel proposals will welcome up to four papers per session. Panels may extend for more than one session. Workshop and seminar/roundtable proposals may include more participants; it is up to the organizers to determine their precise form (open discussion, position papers followed by a roundtable discussion, etc.).


Panel, seminar and workshop proposals should include:


- name and university affiliation of proposed leader(s);

- title of panel, seminar or workshop;

- a 500–750 word description stating topic, relevance and approach;

- a 5-line bio of each seminar leader including their email address(es).


Please send your proposals by 10 December 2012 to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


For more information, see:


See also CFP attached:  pdf  Shakespeare 450 (74.61 kB)

To Infinity . . . and Beyond


The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 23.0425  Monday, 22 October 2012


From:        Hardy M. Cook <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         Monday, October 22, 2012

Subject:     To Infinity . . . and Beyond


Dear Subscribers,


I am humbled by those who took the time to write to me during my most recent moment of doubt about SHAKSPER.


Gabriel Egan and others pointed out to me that the Open messages statistic that I cited in my last missive was undoubtedly inaccurate. Many email programs have the respond when opened function set to not respond. In fact, when I tested some of the email addresses of those who written to me, I discovered quite a few who had written but whose email address was listed as not opening the very message they were responding to—“Has SHASKPER’s Time Come.” This knowledge was indeed refreshing for me to learn.


Most of all, I was genuinely moved by the kind words and suggestions that were offered. Let me please offer a general thanks to all who wrote. 


Operating plan:


I plan, for the time being, to continue SHAKSPER in the form in which it has evolved since it moved from Listserv© Software to the Joomla platform it now inhabits.


I have saved all of the messages and suggestions I have received in a folder for my in-depth study.


I intend periodically, at least once per year, to reassess SHAKSPER’s function in this ever-changing world of the Internet. 


I will keep in the forefront of my thinking two items:


  1. I will be attentive to the possibilities that SHAKSPER might operate more effectively on another platfom.
  2. I will be aware of my own mortality (“Every third thought shall be my grave”) and consider if SHAKSPER has a future after I pass it on and what that future might be.


In many ways, SHAKSPER (even the name is a result of naming conventions in the early days of the Internet expansion, limiting list names to eight characters) is a dinosaur. It was for most of its life a Listserv©; now it is more accurate to describe it as an email distribution or discussion list since the digests (“Newsletters” in Joomla-speak) are distributed using the AcyMailing function of Joomla, the software platform of the SHAKSPER web site: 


I guess in many ways, despite my ongoing exploration of the Independent films and music I learn about from my two daughters, I am a dinosaur. I still prefer that SHAKSPER be moderated and edited and have not found anyone, I feel, who is willing to do the editing and moderation more conscientiously than I do. (Please no more emails on this one.)


Nevertheless, as a dinosaur I will be open to change as my extinction approaches. 


In the immortal words of Buzz Lightyear, “To Infinity . . . And Beyond.”


With gratitude to all,



PS: I encourage anyone who has ongoing ideas about SHAKSPER, its future, better/alternate platforms, and so on, to contact me at anytime by writing to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Has SHAKSPER’s Time Come?


The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 23.0424  Saturday, 20 October 2012


From:        Hardy M. Cook <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         Saturday, October 20, 2012

Subject:     Has SHAKSPER’s Time Come?


Dear Subscribers,


Having received only one response to my request for input regarding a survey I was planning led me to investigate some statistics about SHAKSPER’s readership.


Historically, Ken Steele sent the initial SHAKSPER message to the dozen or so original subscribers on 26 July 1990. 


On February 21, 1992, I became SHAKSPER’s co-editor and then on March 25, I took over the editing of the daily submissions into the digests, becoming SHAKSPER’s sole owner, editor, and moderator on June 3, 1992. So for more than 20 years SHAKSPER has been a defining part of my life, something to which I have dedicated countless hours of labor. 


Now in October 2012, I am wondering if SHAKSPER is any longer relevant or needed.


When Ken Steele passed the reigns of SHAKSPER on to me in June 1992, there were 293 members who were virtually all from academia. Now although the membership numbers well over 1,100, the statistics in the Joolma program, upon which the web site is designed and digests are distributed, indicates that since the April 2011 move to the newly designed site and services only 20 to 30 percent of the digests I mail on a generally daily basis are opened. What this means is that fewer people now are reading SHAKSPER than were when I took over in 1992 and access to the Internet was virtually limited to the military and to academics. 


In 2005, I realized, slow learner that I am, that my light hand at moderation was probably the cause of serious academics leaving the conference since the mid-1990s when the number of non-academics was equal to or surpassed the number of Shakespearean scholars and teachers. I vowed to take a more active role as moderator. I also introduced in the coming years the Roundtable format for special topics, Cook’s Tours, and the SBReviews (The SHAKSPER Book Reviews). 


Now, I am beginning to wonder if I might have mistakenly driven the stake into the heart of SHAKSPER in an attempt to reanimate it.


Google Analytics indicates that 5,000 to 6,000 people a month visit the SHAKSPER web site, but it appears that few on the subscription list visit it. 


Ironically, lately I have more energy and am feeling better that I have in at least 10 years thanks to my meditation practice and to my peripheral nerve surgeon and my other doctors all of whom who are at the forefront of their disciplines.  As a result, I now live in an entirely new relationship to the chronic pain that had defined my life for so long. 


I have many options for turning my renewed energies, yet I must wonder if the time I spend on SHAKSPER, a real labor of love for me, is still worth it.


If you have any thought about this topic that you would like to share with me, please do so.



Juliet is the Sun


The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 23.0423  Friday, 19 October 2012


From:        Marianne Kimura <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         October 18, 2012 10:08:38 PM EDT

Subject:     Juliet is the Sun


In reply to Larry Weiss’s kind comment:


“Thanks, i’ faith, for silence is only commendable 

In a neat’s tongue dried and a maid not vendible”---

(The Merchant of Venice, I.i.111) 


Marianne Kimura


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