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James Walton

Part one of this article examines a species of 'figural' plot - single episodes that mirror a substantial part of the narrative that contains it. These include Portia's predicament in The Merchant of Venice as interpreted by Freud, together with comparable choices encountered by King Lear, Sir Thomas Bertram in Mansfield Park, Brontë's Rochester, and Richardson's Pamela. In each case the subject must break free of conventional authority in order to choose wisely. The beginning of Joyce's Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man directly confronts a patriarchal plot, establishing the artist's 'opposing' fiction against the received one. Part II considers the way in which Dickens situates himself in relation to external authority, bringing about the defeat of a series of spurious 'authors' in the struggle to determine Oliver Twist's identity before renouncing in a Prospero gesture his own claim to authority.

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The Nature of Gender

Are Juliet, Desdemona and Cordelia to their Fathers as Nature is to Culture?

Gordana Galić Kakkonen and Ana Penjak

This article brings ecofeminist critical thinking to William Shakespeare's female characters: Juliet in Romeo and Juliet, Desdemona in Othello, and Cordelia in King Lear. Beginning with the principal that women and nature are similar in many ways (reproductive function, discrimination, subordination, possession, violence), ecofeminism focuses on the interaction between the two. Ecofeminism grounds its beliefs in the fact that patriarchal domination gets imposed through different binary oppositions including man-woman and culture-nature categories. By applying ecofeminism's positions, the authors will provide a critical thinking of the production of socially imposed inequalities seen through Juliet, Desdemona, and Cordelia. Since out of many different publications on the topic of ecofeminism none has provided such an approach, the authors believe that the article presents an important addition to the literature on both Shakespeare and ecofeminism.

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Reading Between the Sheets

Letters in Shakespearean Tragedy

Lisa Hopkins

When A.C. Bradley came to write about King Lear in his book on Shakespeare’s tragedies, what annoyed him most about the play was what he considered the patently absurd fact that Edgar is supposed to have written Edmund a letter when they were both living in the same castle. That Edmund should have pretended anything so asinine, and, worse still, that Gloucester should have believed it, both seemed to Bradley utterly beyond belief. Approaches to reading Shakespeare’s plays have of course moved on in leaps and bounds in the days since Bradley, but, even so, I want to argue that we may still miss some of the meanings of the very frequent use of letters in Renaissance plays, and particularly those in Shakespeare’s four major tragedies. Letters sprinkle the drama in extraordinary abundance – the word ‘letter’ occurs thirty-three times in King Lear alone – and often occur at moments of particularly heightened significance, as when Lady Macbeth in her sleep repeatedly writes and seals a letter which neither we nor the characters ever discover the contents of. They frequently serve a vital role in plot development, particularly in the uncovering of hidden truths, and occasionally, as when Edmund makes such an issue of ostensibly wanting to conceal the supposed letter from Edgar about his person, they become in themselves significant dramatic properties in ways which seem almost to foreshadow Pamela and Clarissa. What I want to focus on here, though, is not so much the plot function of the letter as its rôle as discourse, and, in particular, its tonal and status relationship to other kinds of discourse in the drama.

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Shakespeare in Sarajevo

Theatrical and Cinematic Encounters with the Balkans War

Sara Soncini

Mitchell’s staging of 3 Henry VI at the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1994, my own ‘Balkan trilogy’ includes Sarah Kane’s reworking of King Lear in her by now legendary play Blasted (1995), as well as Mario Martone’s 1998 documentary - style film

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Shakespeare and the Jews

Lily Kahn

Roger Wooster explores the ways in which actors and directors can harness changing cultural norms in their interpretation of Shylock. By contrast, Richard H. Weisberg analyses Merchant, King Lear, Measure for Measure and a number of sonnets from a

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Shakespeare's Fools

A Piece in a Peacebuilding Mosaic

Maja Milatovic-Ovadia

Tempest and King Lear , interlinked with the bricolage of Fool's lines gathered from across Shakespeare's opus. This production also embraced metatheatrical elements and the performance began with house lights still on and a joyful Fool wandering on the

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Katherine Hennessey and Margaret Litvin

King Lear / Hamlet (2014) and Romeo and Juliet (2015), transfixing international journalists and others desperate for signs of hope. 8 But what about ‘local’ writers and directors, those who neither travel nor find international donors and audiences

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Nahrain al-Mousawi

Hanna’s Bourdieu in Translation Studies: The Socio-Cultural Dynamics of Shakespeare Translation in Egypt analyses the history of Arabic translations of the Shakespeare tragedies Macbeth, Hamlet, King Lear and Othello as products of sociocultural

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Andrew Barnaby

Dramatis Personae (assuming four actors) King Lear Fool Goneril / Lenny Regan / Cordelia King Lear, Goneril, Regan discovered on stage, frozen in position; when they finally come out of these positions we immediately understand that they are in the

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Jeffrey B. Griswold

early modern cosmological thought and practice’. In plays like King Lear and Macbeth , such addresses are ‘examples of the ecology of the passions when the early modern self hails the myriad forces that surround it’. 29 Paster shows that we must take