Author: Katherine West Scheil
Publisher: Cornell University Press
Release Date: 2012-05-08
Genre: Literary Criticism
In the late nineteenth century hundreds of clubs formed across the United States devoted to the reading of Shakespeare. From Pasadena, California, to the seaside town of Camden, Maine; from the isolated farm town of Ottumwa, Iowa, to Mobile, Alabama, on the Gulf coast, Americans were reading Shakespeare in astonishing numbers and in surprising places. Composed mainly of women, these clubs offered the opportunity for members not only to read and study Shakespeare but also to participate in public and civic activities outside the home. In She Hath Been Reading, Katherine West Scheil uncovers this hidden layer of intellectual activity that flourished in American society well into the twentieth century. Shakespeare clubs were crucial for women's intellectual development because they provided a consistent intellectual stimulus (more so than was the case with most general women's clubs) and because women discovered a world of possibilities, both public and private, inspired by their reading of Shakespeare. Indeed, gathering to read and discuss Shakespeare often led women to actively improve their lot in life and make their society a better place. Many clubs took action on larger social issues such as women's suffrage, philanthropy, and civil rights. At the same time, these efforts served to embed Shakespeare into American culture as a marker for learning, self-improvement, civilization, and entertainment for a broad array of populations, varying in age, race, location, and social standing. Based on extensive research in the archives of the Folger Shakespeare Library and in dozens of local archives and private collections across America, She Hath Been Reading shows the important role that literature can play in the lives of ordinary people. As testament to this fact, the book includes an appendix listing more than five hundred Shakespeare clubs across America.
This volume contains a collection of essays on Shakespeare Jubilees around the world, from 1769 to 2014. The contributions range from the elaborate celebrations in Shakespeare's hometown to more modest festivities elsewhere; and from ambitious, theatrical, and politically loaded demonstrations to nationally colored, culturally distinct, and idiosyncratic commemorations. The variety of ways in which geographically distant countries have remembered Shakespeare has never before been the object of a comparative study. The book's essays will throw new light on Shakespeare as a shared international heritage. (Series: Studies on English Literature / Studien zur englischen Literatur - Vol. 27) [Subject: Literary Studies, Shakespearean Studies, Theater Studies]
Author: Andrew James Hartley
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Release Date: 2014-12-11
"Featuring essays from seventeen international scholars, this exciting new collection is the first sustained study of Shakespeare on the university and college stage. Treating the subject both historically and globally, the essays describe theatrical conditions which fit neither the professional nor the amateur models and show how student performances provide valuable vehicles for artistic construction and intellectual analysis. The book redresses the neglect of this distinctive form of Shakespeare performance, opening up new ways of thinking about the nature and value of university production and its ability to draw unique audiences. Looking at productions across the world - from Asia to Europe and North America - it will interest scholars as well as upper-level students in areas such as Shakespeare studies, performance studies and theatre history"--
Author: Gordon McMullan
Publisher: A&C Black
Release Date: 2013-12-02
Genre: Literary Criticism
Women Making Shakespeare presents a series of 20-25 short essays that draw on a variety of resources, including interviews with directors, actors, and other performance practitioners, to explore the place (or constitutive absence) of women in the Shakespearean text and in the history of Shakespearean reception - the many ways women, working individually or in communities, have shaped and transformed the reception, performance, and teaching of Shakespeare from the 17th century to the present. The book highlights the essential role Shakespeare's texts have played in the historical development of feminism. Rather than a traditional collection of essays, Women Making Shakespeare brings together materials from diverse resources and uses diverse research methods to create something new and transformative. Among the many women's interactions with Shakespeare to be considered are acting (whether on the professional stage, in film, on lecture tours, or in staged readings), editing, teaching, academic writing, and recycling through adaptations and appropriations (film, novels, poems, plays, visual arts).
Author: Ann Thompson
Publisher: Manchester University Press
Release Date: 1997
Genre: Literary Criticism
Women reading Shakespeare, 1660-1900 comprehensively rediscovers a lost tradition of women's writing on Shakespeare. Since Margaret Cavendish published the first critical essay on Shakespeare in 1664, women have written as scholars, critics, editors, performers and popularisers of Shakespeare. Many found in Shakespeare criticism the opportunity to raise a wide variety of issues, ranging from the use of women in society, family life, social relations and ethnic difference. In their different ways, women appropriated Shakespeare to their own ends - not always in step with their male contemporaries. Virtually none of this work is available today; it is unread and unknown. This fascinating anthology draws upon extensive new research to collect for the first time in one volume the Shakespeare criticism of some fifty British and American women writing before 1900. It includes the work of both familiar and unknown names and represents the diversity of literary genres used by women: the scholarly article, the periodical essay, book-length studies, personal memoirs, books for children, school editions. The volume also includes previously unknown Shakespeare illustrations by women, and a general introduction to the development of women's criticism of Shakespeare before 1900.
One of the messages that Emily Dickinson wanted to communicate to the world was her great love of William Shakespeare--her letters abound with references to him and his works. This book explores the many implications of her admiration for the Bard. Páraic Finnerty clarifies the essential role that Shakespeare had in Dickinson's life by locating her allusions to his writings within a nineteenth-century American context and by treating reading as a practice that is shaped, to a large extent, by culture. In the process, he throws new light on Shakespeare's multifaceted presence in Dickinson's world: in education, theater, newspapers, public lectures, reading clubs, and literary periodicals. Through analysis of letters, journals, diaries, records, periodicals, newspapers, and marginalia, Finnerty juxtaposes Dickinson's engagement with Shakespeare with the responses of her contemporaries. Her Shakespeare emerges as an immoral dramatist and highly moral poet; a highbrow symbol of class and cultivation and a lowbrow popular entertainer; an impetus behind the emerging American theater criticism and an English author threatening American creativity; a writer culturally approved for women and yet one whose authority women often appropriated to critique their culture. Such a context allows the explication of Dickinson's specific references to Shakespeare and further conjecture about how she most likely read him. Finnerty also examines those of Dickinson's responses to Shakespeare that deviated from what might have been expected and approved of by her culture. Imaginatively departing from the commonplace, Dickinson chose to admire three of Shakespeare's most powerful and transgressive female characters--Cleopatra, Queen Margaret, and Lady Macbeth--instead of his more worthy and virtuous heroines. More startling, although the poet found resonance for her own life in Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, and Macbeth, she chose, in the racially charged atmosphere of nineteenth-century America, to identify with Shakespeare's most controversial character, Othello, thereby defying expectations once again.
Containing 1,500 biographies and more than 1,400 photographs or portraits, this extraordinary encyclopedia, originally published in 1897, documents the lives and achievements of remarkable American women who lived during the nineteenth century. Frances E. Willard and Mary A. Livermore, two extraordinary women in their own right, compiled this massive work toward the end of their own very accomplished lives to demonstrate that women were a rising cultural and intellectual force to be reckoned with. Providing a window into the 19th-century world of white middle-class women over three generations, the encyclopedia reveals the range of women’s career paths and vocations at this time, and provides a benchmark of the growth in women’s consciousness of themselves as a gender class. Among the occupations listed those falling into the literary category are the most numerous: authors, editors, journalists, lecturers, literary contributors, novelists, poets, and publishers. Other sizable categories are actors, artists, educators, philanthropists, physicians, temperance workers, and woman suffragists. Also included are profiles of all of the First Ladies of the 19th century, and a number of less highly placed women who are still well-known today: Louisa May Alcott, author of Little Women; famed nurse and humanitarian Clara Barton; America’s best-known female composer, Mrs. H. H. A. Beach; theosophist Helene Petrovna Blavatsky; America’s first woman lawyer, Myra Bradwell; mental health pioneer Dorothea Dix; Harriet Beecher Stowe, widely read author of Uncle Tom’s Cabin; and suffragists and women’s rights advocates Susan B. Anthony, Matilda Joslyn Gage, Lucretia Mott, Lucy Stone, and Elizabeth Cady Stanton. An insightful introduction by feminist sociologists Patricia Lengermann and Jill Niebrugge-Brantley synopsizes the lives of Frances E. Willard and Mary A. Livermore, evaluates their contributions, and analyzes the sociological implications of this monumental project.
Author: Alden T. Vaughan
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Release Date: 2012-04-05
Shakespeare in America is a lively account of America's embracing of Shakespeare's works in print and in performance from colonial times to the present. It describes American scholarly attention to Shakespeare (criticism, editions of the plays, secondary school and collegiate curricula) and light-hearted attention (burlesques, musical comedies, kitsch). The book highlights major contributors, including actors, editors, writers, pedagogues, and impresariosto Shakespeare's popularity in America, as well as organizations for the study or performance of Shakespeare, such as summer festivals, professional associations, research libraries, and Shakespeare clubs.Twenty illustrations enhance this survey of the multiple ways that American culture has embraced the English dramatist and poet.