tempestsarekind: (Default)
Another day, another wish that someone would cast Daveed Diggs as Christopher Marlowe…

*Yes, this is a Massacre at Paris joke. of sorts.

(This is one of the things I don't understand about the continued attempts at making Shakespeare a sexy rebel instead of the guy who kept his head down: Marlowe is RIGHT THERE, being completely extra - as the children say - writing scandalous stuff, actually being the innovator people want Shakespeare to have been.) (I'm thinking of that monstrously stupid moment in Anonymous - which one? you say - where all the other Elizabethan dramatists are gobsmacked that "Shakespeare" wrote AN ENTIRE PLAY in BLANK VERSE, like they hadn't all been doing that. But that's just the most egregious example that sprang to mind - although that moment in the Will trailer where someone gripes at Will, "You can't just make up words!" and he's all, "Well, someone must!" comes pretty close: making up words is what Elizabethan dramatists did; it's not some province exclusive to Shakespeare's genius!)

(yes, yes, I know, Shakespeare has "pre-awareness" or whatever they're calling audience recognition these days. But I find it hard to believe that anyone who's actually thinking about watching something like Will wouldn't watch a similar show about Marlowe instead, if you could just get someone to make it.)
tempestsarekind: (marlowe--he fights crime)
I'm being slightly snarky about the unnecessarily breathless, Wikileaks-style headline of this piece:

Spy report that criticised Marlowe for 'gay Christ' claim is revealed online
https://www.theguardian.com/stage/2017/mar/31/christopher-marlowe-spy-baines-note-gay-christ-british-library-online

But the actual fact that you can now view the Baines note online, along with many other resources on the British Library's Discovering Literature website, is rather lovely, actually.

(Also, one of the other things mentioned in the article is Derek Jarman's notebooks for his film of Edward II.)
tempestsarekind: (wtf?)
So NPR published this ridiculous interview with Mark Rylance and Derek Jacobi about "the authorship question" on (I think) April 25, in which they said the usual ridiculous things, and the interviewer actually closed with "who cares what they say as long as they say it with those accents?" so it was clearly not a rigorous sort of interview.
http://www.npr.org/2016/04/25/475551898/2-shakespearean-actors-revive-debate-over-the-bard-s-identity

(Edit: it wasn't the interviewer who said this, although it did end the piece. Still, this is the kind of question the interviewer asked Rylance and Jacobi: "I wonder about the question of why the authorship question would have drawn fine legal minds? I mean, I'm wondering if they're more open to following where the evidence takes them?" WHAT THE WHAT. That is not a question; that is a leading statement. Here is another "question": "And may I ask, too, there's evidence of a widely traveled person. The plays - Many of the plays are set in Italy." And here is the ONLY question that she asks about the other side of the story - you know, the one where all the facts are: "Although, as you know well, Shakespeare scholars especially have been pretty rough. They have called you - What? - Flat-Earthers?" Not once does she even ask them why scholars might disagree with them on any of their points and ask them to explain why they believe what they believe in the face of scholarly evidence.)

People complained in the comments because there was no counterargument, and several people compared this to interviewing climate change skeptics without also interviewing scientists.

In response, NPR published this defensive piece, which I find more offensive than the original interview:

http://www.npr.org/sections/ombudsman/2016/04/29/475913710/to-be-or-not-to-be-falsely-equivalent-the-shakespeare-authorship-debate

Rylance and Jacobi are hardly complete amateurs on the subject. Rylance, who was interviewed for but not the subject of the earlier NPR piece, was the founding creative director of London's Shakespeare's Globe Theatre. As he told Montagne in Monday's interview, "Both Derek and I have committed our lives, since we were teenagers, to this author."


Oh, well then. No need to present the overwhelmingly dominant point of view of pretty much every scholar who actually works in this field; Rylance told the interviewer that he and Jacobi have devoted their lives to Shakespeare, so that's clearly the same.

And the second, defensive piece quotes the interviewer, again without doing anything to contextualize her statements or point out that the reason people have problems with this argument is that her entire premise is wrong:

"As I said in the interview, the dearth of evidence connecting the man William Shakespeare to the work, long ago gave rise to doubts as to whether he was the true author. Of course, Shakespearean scholars and most lovers of the Shakespeare plays and sonnets, quite reasonably, start from the premise — and stick to the premise — that he is the author. It is so universally accepted that Shakespeare is Shakespeare that it's quite a stretch to suggest any other line of thinking would be 'equivalent.' And that's especially true after a weekend overflowing with celebrations of William Shakespeare, on the 400th anniversary of his death.

But the mystery is intriguing, and far from a simple conspiracy theory, its champions have compiled some compelling evidence for ruling out Shakespeare and considering, at least, other possible authors.

All in all, it seemed as good a time as any to sit down with two of the world's most acclaimed Shakespearean actors to chat about who wrote the plays they have lived, breathed and, by the way, studied, for decades." (my emphasis)


I mean, "his name is on them, and his friends all said he wrote them, and he was actually a part of the London theater world, and we have way more evidence that Shakespeare wrote his plays than that, say, Christopher Marlowe - I mean Marley, I mean Marlin - wrote his" is not just a premise. Nor is "one of the sonnets says 'every word doth almost tell my name,' and if you take the 'y' off of 'every' and scramble the letters around, you get 'Vere,'" or "de Vere went to Italy and once stabbed a guy, so he must have written Romeo and Juliet and based Hamlet on his own life" actually compelling evidence. But whatever, I guess; who needs standards when one has plummy accents on one's side?
tempestsarekind: (rory died and turned into a roman)
All's Well, Much Ado, and Faustus:

http://popwatch.ew.com/2012/08/15/globe-on-screen-trailer-poster/

1. YAY.
2. I am more amused than I ought to be that Entertainment Weekly is doubtless covering this because of the Arthur Darvill connection.
3. Why do I always seem to get this sort of information from various sources *before* I get it from the Globe mailing list I'm signed up for?

I never wrote about seeing this production of Doctor Faustus, during my last trip to London, largely because of The Arthur Darvill Problem - by which I mean the fact that I didn't want my whole review to be about Arthur Darvill and how good he was and how excellent he looked in his Renaissance costume. And then the problem was compounded by the fact that everything I thought about the play felt very "Faustus 101," so every time I tried to write about *more* than Arthur, afterward, I never got anywhere. But here are the Arthur-centric things I can scrounge up from my journal:

cut for silly Faustus ramblings from June 2011 )

Sigh. It worries me, the way I never have anything interesting or intelligent to say about anything other than Shakespeare and Austen (and even that is pushing it, most days).
tempestsarekind: (your strange behavior puzzles martha)
You guys. Why did I not know about this?
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1499910/

Did you all know that there was a Dead Man in Deptford movie in the works, and just not tell me?
tempestsarekind: (your strange behavior puzzles martha)
You guys. Why did I not know about this?
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1499910/

Did you all know that there was a Dead Man in Deptford movie in the works, and just not tell me?
tempestsarekind: (viola reading (tears))
--I am now the proud owner of Patterns of Fashion 4: The cut and construction of linen shirts, smocks, neckwear, headwear and accessories for men and women, c. 1540-1660, by Janet Arnold (with additional material by Jenny Tiramani and Santina M. Levey). I suppose the title tells you what it's about. It's got shirts and collars and color photos and lace, and it is lovely. Actually, this was a Christmas present (my mother, who is also lovely, ordered it for me from Amazon UK), but I just got it back, in the box of things I got over the holidays but couldn't fit into my suitcase.

--I also bought the Arden 2 edition of Hamlet at a used bookstore. This made sense, because I didn't have a conflated single edition to work from. The dorky part is that now I can't bring myself to take notes in it, for some reason, so unless I get over this, I think I'm still going to have to order the New Cambridge edition as a working copy. The Arden is still certainly worth having for Harold Jenkins' notes, and it was maybe five dollars, but still.

--And I also got The Secret of the Rose by Sarah L. Thomson (which I had already read), because it is a children's book involving a cross-dressed heroine named Rosalind, crypto-Catholicism, the Rose Theatre (duh), and Christopher Marlowe. What's not to like?

This post brought to you by my complete and total inability to finish grading.
tempestsarekind: (viola reading (tears))
--I am now the proud owner of Patterns of Fashion 4: The cut and construction of linen shirts, smocks, neckwear, headwear and accessories for men and women, c. 1540-1660, by Janet Arnold (with additional material by Jenny Tiramani and Santina M. Levey). I suppose the title tells you what it's about. It's got shirts and collars and color photos and lace, and it is lovely. Actually, this was a Christmas present (my mother, who is also lovely, ordered it for me from Amazon UK), but I just got it back, in the box of things I got over the holidays but couldn't fit into my suitcase.

--I also bought the Arden 2 edition of Hamlet at a used bookstore. This made sense, because I didn't have a conflated single edition to work from. The dorky part is that now I can't bring myself to take notes in it, for some reason, so unless I get over this, I think I'm still going to have to order the New Cambridge edition as a working copy. The Arden is still certainly worth having for Harold Jenkins' notes, and it was maybe five dollars, but still.

--And I also got The Secret of the Rose by Sarah L. Thomson (which I had already read), because it is a children's book involving a cross-dressed heroine named Rosalind, crypto-Catholicism, the Rose Theatre (duh), and Christopher Marlowe. What's not to like?

This post brought to you by my complete and total inability to finish grading.
tempestsarekind: (bonny kate)
I wound up watching The Thirteenth Warrior this morning/afternoon instead of doing anything useful. I don't actually think it was a particularly *good* movie, but it was much better than its advertising suggested. Also, as you may know, I am a sucker for things that foreground the issues of language and translation in historical contexts (see my "time travel" tag), and this film did that, with spoken Latin *and* a sequence in which the main character slowly pieces together an understanding of a language foreign to him. So it gets points for that alone.

And now I want, if I ever teach a survey course on my own (though why someone would trust me to teach anyone anything, after the fairly dismal showing I've made these last two-and-then-some years, I'm sure I don't know), to have a cracked-out film series to go with it. The Thirteenth Warrior for Beowulf; A Knight's Tale for Chaucer; whatever that other random medieval movie with Paul Bettany is (the one where he's an itinerant player, or something? performing mystery plays?) for medieval drama; something involving Henry VIII for Utopia*; and Shakespeare in Love** and Twelfth Night for Marlowe and Shakespeare.***

This would probably be a horrible idea, actually, and would further cement all kinds of weird ideas students have about these periods, but it was fun to think about.

*I have to teach Utopia in a few weeks. What do you want to bet that I accidentally reference Ever After?

**There is a sad lack of films involving Marlowe, and I can't really see reading Edward II in a survey class. I'm still shocked that there hasn't been a Marlowe biopic yet.

***My scheme breaks down for Milton. Are there any Civil War films readily available? I'm not sure why, but the Interregnum and/or the Restoration don't quite sit well, even though that's probably more accurate for PL.
tempestsarekind: (bonny kate)
I wound up watching The Thirteenth Warrior this morning/afternoon instead of doing anything useful. I don't actually think it was a particularly *good* movie, but it was much better than its advertising suggested. Also, as you may know, I am a sucker for things that foreground the issues of language and translation in historical contexts (see my "time travel" tag), and this film did that, with spoken Latin *and* a sequence in which the main character slowly pieces together an understanding of a language foreign to him. So it gets points for that alone.

And now I want, if I ever teach a survey course on my own (though why someone would trust me to teach anyone anything, after the fairly dismal showing I've made these last two-and-then-some years, I'm sure I don't know), to have a cracked-out film series to go with it. The Thirteenth Warrior for Beowulf; A Knight's Tale for Chaucer; whatever that other random medieval movie with Paul Bettany is (the one where he's an itinerant player, or something? performing mystery plays?) for medieval drama; something involving Henry VIII for Utopia*; and Shakespeare in Love** and Twelfth Night for Marlowe and Shakespeare.***

This would probably be a horrible idea, actually, and would further cement all kinds of weird ideas students have about these periods, but it was fun to think about.

*I have to teach Utopia in a few weeks. What do you want to bet that I accidentally reference Ever After?

**There is a sad lack of films involving Marlowe, and I can't really see reading Edward II in a survey class. I'm still shocked that there hasn't been a Marlowe biopic yet.

***My scheme breaks down for Milton. Are there any Civil War films readily available? I'm not sure why, but the Interregnum and/or the Restoration don't quite sit well, even though that's probably more accurate for PL.
tempestsarekind: (viola giggle)
Apparently there was a Marlowe musical. For about a month in 1981.

http://www.ibdb.com/production.asp?ID=4858

And judging from the song list, there seems to have been some kind of rivalry or love triangle between Marlowe, Shakespeare, and Aemilia Bassano.

I have no words for this.

ETA: A review of the show, from the NYT!
http://tinyurl.com/24nutc
tempestsarekind: (viola giggle)
Apparently there was a Marlowe musical. For about a month in 1981.

http://www.ibdb.com/production.asp?ID=4858

And judging from the song list, there seems to have been some kind of rivalry or love triangle between Marlowe, Shakespeare, and Aemilia Bassano.

I have no words for this.

ETA: A review of the show, from the NYT!
http://tinyurl.com/24nutc
tempestsarekind: (viola reading)
I have become the laziest person ever. I am supposed to be reading A Caveat for Common Cursetors and A Notable Discovery of Cozenage for my field exam. I even *want* to read these two texts. But am I reading them? No. Instead I am sitting around watching episodes of Bones (Stephen Fry and quotes from Twelfth Night! squee!), wondering why people have chosen this week to all tell me that I should be watching Slings and Arrows (I KNOW, but I do not have Sundance or Netflix! I am already sad! Stop it!), and having involved conversations about something we have decided to call Marlowe! The Musical.

I am so going to fail my exam.
tempestsarekind: (viola reading)
I have become the laziest person ever. I am supposed to be reading A Caveat for Common Cursetors and A Notable Discovery of Cozenage for my field exam. I even *want* to read these two texts. But am I reading them? No. Instead I am sitting around watching episodes of Bones (Stephen Fry and quotes from Twelfth Night! squee!), wondering why people have chosen this week to all tell me that I should be watching Slings and Arrows (I KNOW, but I do not have Sundance or Netflix! I am already sad! Stop it!), and having involved conversations about something we have decided to call Marlowe! The Musical.

I am so going to fail my exam.

grumble.

Nov. 10th, 2006 01:43 pm
tempestsarekind: (peddlers of bombast)
In my continued avoidance of The Faerie Queene, I began looking over Doctor Faustus for next week (and for my fields list). I hadn't gotten especially far when I started thinking about that story that there was one demon too many on stage during one of Alleyn's performances...and since to wonder idly is to be possessed by an intense desire to know, especially when other work is at hand, I set about trying to find an actual citation.

A Google search gave me three sources to which I could turn for more on this matter: Prynne's Histriomastix, Aubrey's Brief Lives, and Chambers' The Elizabethan Stage. Of course, I own none of these sources, the libraries are all closed for the holiday, and I can't seem to find an etext of either of the first two.

Grumble.

In related news--after this, I also remembered reading somewhere that Neil Gaiman deliberately plays with this idea in "A Midsummer Night's Dream" in Sandman. And I thought, "Ah, he must have gotten it from Aubrey, which he's read." And then I felt supremely geeky for a) knowing these things and b) having this conversation with myself in the first place.

Also, I came down with a cold yesterday evening. This is NOT conducive to the reading of Spenser.

grumble.

Nov. 10th, 2006 01:43 pm
tempestsarekind: (peddlers of bombast)
In my continued avoidance of The Faerie Queene, I began looking over Doctor Faustus for next week (and for my fields list). I hadn't gotten especially far when I started thinking about that story that there was one demon too many on stage during one of Alleyn's performances...and since to wonder idly is to be possessed by an intense desire to know, especially when other work is at hand, I set about trying to find an actual citation.

A Google search gave me three sources to which I could turn for more on this matter: Prynne's Histriomastix, Aubrey's Brief Lives, and Chambers' The Elizabethan Stage. Of course, I own none of these sources, the libraries are all closed for the holiday, and I can't seem to find an etext of either of the first two.

Grumble.

In related news--after this, I also remembered reading somewhere that Neil Gaiman deliberately plays with this idea in "A Midsummer Night's Dream" in Sandman. And I thought, "Ah, he must have gotten it from Aubrey, which he's read." And then I felt supremely geeky for a) knowing these things and b) having this conversation with myself in the first place.

Also, I came down with a cold yesterday evening. This is NOT conducive to the reading of Spenser.
tempestsarekind: (viola reading)
Reading along in Stanley Wells' new book Shakespeare and Co., I found the following passage about Richard Baines:

"Baines had studied at Cambridge some years before Marlowe, had taken his MA in 1576, and then travelled to the seminary at Rheims as a candidate for the Catholic priesthood. In fact, however, he was - whether for profit or through genuine conviction - a secret heretic. Throughout his stay at the college he did all he could to undermine his fellow seminarians' morale and to stir up disaffection by propagating views resembling those of which he was later to accuse Marlowe, and with which indeed he may have indoctrinated him. More trivially, he was alleged to have tempted his colleagues to eat meat pies on fast days." (97)

(Was there a lot of profit in the heresy game? Was it like one of those work-from-home telemarketing jobs?)

I don't know why I find this so funny. Especially in light of all the other plans people seem to have suspected Baines of, like plotting to kill the college president and inject poison into the wells. But...meat pies? It's such a layaway sort of plan for corrupting men's souls, a little at a time. It's the Elizabethan version of "You know you want to...everybody else is doing it..."

A passage on the previous page is amusing too, though for different reasons: "Notably, the Earl of Oxford, who converted to Roman Catholicism on a visit to Italy but nevertheless betrayed a number of fellow Catholic noblemen to the Protestant authorities on his return, and who was accused of sodomizing his pageboys and of trying to kill Sir Philip Sidney, confessed to at least one charge of atheism." It's just so blatantly trying to discredit Oxford. (Not that this is difficult, I suppose, with all the servant-slaying and wife-abandoning that Oxford was prone to.) I can just see Stanley Wells rolling up his sleeves, all, "You want to talk trash about William Shakespeare of Stratford? Bring it ON." (Charges of buggery beat "small Latin and less Greek" any day.)

(Does anyone ever argue that Marlowe faked his death *without* also claiming that he wrote Shakespeare's plays, I wonder? Like maybe he got tired of the spying game and escaped to be a shepherd?)

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