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While serious idea met literary stories within the Nineteen Seventies and '80s, essentially the most radical and fascinating theoretical paintings focused at the quasi-sacred determine of Shakespeare. In replacement Shakespeares, John Drakakis introduced jointly key essays via founding figures during this flow to remake Shakespeare studies.

A new afterword by means of Robert Weimann outlines the extreme impression of different Shakespeares on educational Shakespeare stories. yet as but, the Shakespeare fable maintains to thrive either in Stratford and in our faculties. those essays are as appropriate and as robust as they have been upon booklet and with a contributor record that reads like a 'who's who' of recent Shakespeare experiences, replacement Shakespeares calls for to be learn.

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Extra info for Alternative Shakespeares, Volume 1 (2nd Edition)

Sample text

Despite an initial and reassuring location of Caliban as some kind of fishy monster, the possibility that he might at some time and in some place creep worryingly close to the category of ‘man’ is discussed at some length by Trinculo. It is worrying, of course, because, should Caliban cross that boundary, it would mean that the category of ‘man’ is not the closed, finished and well-defined entity that sustains and is sustained by a European taxonomy. Even more disturbing, a sly deictic turn of the text suddenly thrusts this possibility down the throat of the play’s first, English audience: ALTERNATIVE SHAKESPEARES 27 A strange fish!

Nowell-Smith 1967, p. 250) In the event, the consequences of having what, in a less formal letter, he termed ‘a fling at Bill’ were perhaps to justify that last statement. Within a year of beginning work in the national cathedral church, preferment in one of its central parishes had come his way. 3 At its unveiling, then, in 1907, the monument could hardly have been more solidly based, or centrally placed. Focusing on the figure which, for over a hundred years, had been growing to the stature of cultural superman, obviously designed to become the lynch-pin of a series which was almost a ‘traditional British institution’, at a time ALTERNATIVE SHAKESPEARES 33 when the national drive towards universal literacy was creating a mass audience for it, authored by a man whose very name—Walter Raleigh — carried inevitable and appropriate connotations of reassuring contemporaneity, special knowledge, buccaneering glory and a fine literary style, and who was, by then, the first Professor of English Literature appointed by the most ideologically central educational institution in the country, the English Men of Letters Shakespeare arrived with an aura available to few other volumes before or since.

Unfortunately, that is exactly what the discourse of the press was currently seeking to deny. The result, Raleigh tells us, was ‘shoals of abusive letters by every post’; one of the worst from a working man who concluded by denying his manhood (Raleigh 1926, II, p. 488). Worse was to follow. On 7 August, The Times reported a piece written in the German press by Raleigh’s former colleague at Liverpool University, the ‘notorious Professor Kuno Meyer’. Meyer (a scholar of Celtic) cleverly raised the spectre of Further Calibans beyond the English pale by congratulating his old friend on the reported Mill Hill speech, and saying that his insight into the true nature of the German people undoubtedly came from the fact that Raleigh himself was not English, that Scottish blood ran in his veins, and that awareness of the Celtic dimension should undoubtedly make him applaud what Meyer, twisting the knife, calls the ‘splendid behaviour’ of the Irish rebels in Dublin in the rising of Easter, 1916.

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