Monday, August 29, 2011

Monday, August 29, 2011

Not a lot to report this week. It's been pretty quiet on the Shakespeare front.

  • Shakespeare sightings - They're everywhere. We don't even think of them, they're so much a part of our lives. But starting this week I'm going to take note:
    • in Dagens Nyheter (for you non-Swedes, one of the two major daily newspapers) on the 28th, a notice on Shakespeare's insults. It refers to the site (although I had to search a bit because the address wasn't complete in the notice.)
    • Upon listening to the remastered CD's of Blondie's LP's, Hal noticed the listing of ”Once More into the Bleach” which turns out being a remix album released in 1988. So here's a contest: What's the original quote? In which play? The first to post a comment with the correct answer (not you, Hal!) wins a big prize (a gold star in my soon to be started book of gold stars).
    • A very minor character in the novel I'm reading (Self by Yann Martel) has a cat named Shakespeare. Said cat sat in the main character's lap while he was watching TV. Sorry. Not much of a sighting, I agree, but a sighting nevertheless.
    • That's it for sightings this week.
  • Books ordered and finally received: The New Cambridge Companion to Shakespeare, edited by Margreta de Grazia and Stanley Wells. Not a guide to each play as I had kind of expected but a series of essays about various subjects by a bunch of different people, for example Stephen Greenblatt, ”The Traces of Shakespeare's Life”. Looks interesting.
  • Website to Shakespeare Calling has now been sent to several friends and colleagues. Hoping for responses. I got an email from one colleague but he doesn't want to comment on the blog itself. Too bad! It was interesting!
  • Now reading
    • still Kermode's Shakespeare's Language. Should finish it this week.
  • Now reading aloud with Hal
    • still Richard III. We'll finish it this evening and then we have lots of intros, essays etc to read plus six movies to watch; three are the actual plays and three are other related stuff. Who knows when I'll get to writing my analysis and what I'll write about.
  • Posted today
    • From Anticipation to Disappointment and Exasperation - Margaret's Marriage to Henry” in The First Part of the Contention of the Two Famous Houses of York and Lancaster, or Henry the Sixth, Part Two


  1. The collected Shakespeare insults are a treasure trove if you can't find just the right phrase on your own! It can be difficult for us non English speaking people but now we can win any argument with a "Am I your bird?, I mean to shift my bush (The Taming of the Shrew)" or a "She's the kitchen wench, and all grease ; and I know not what use to put her but to make a lamp of her and run her from her own light. I warrant, her rags and the tallow in them will burn a Poland winter. If she lives till doomsday, she'll burn a week longer than the whole world" (Comedy of Errors)
    Thank you Ruby Jand!

  2. Aren't they wonderful? One of the first things I was impressed by in my early readings of Shakespeare were his wonderful insults. One of my more subtle favorites, that I would love to use someday in real life is, "I do desire we may be better strangers" from As You Like It. Of course that's extremely polite compared to most of them. Another favorite: "thou art a boil, a plague sore" from King Lear. Now that's one I hope never have to use (or hear!).