Monthly Archives: June 2012

“What Keats called Shakespeare’s “negative capability,” his unmatched capacity for making audiences (and readers) see things from multiple angles, here makes for a somewhat disturbing experience.”

The Merchant of Venice An Introduction By Dennis Abrams ———————————————————————– If you look at it one way, The Merchant of Venice is straight-up anti-Semitic propaganda:  a Christian merchant becomes indebted to a stereotypically greedy Jewish moneylender, Shylock, who takes advantage … Continue reading

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A Shakespeare Miscellany

  A Shakespeare Miscellany Before we start our reading of The Merchant of Venice, I thought I’d share a couple of article I’ve read recently that I thought might be of interest, and make for a nice break:   Reading … Continue reading

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“Not mine own fears, nor the prophetic soul/Of the wide world dreaming on things to come,/Can yet the lease of my true love control,/Supposed as forfeit to a confined doom.”

Shakespeare, Sonnet #107 SONNET 107 Not mine own fears, nor the prophetic soul Of the wide world dreaming on things to come, Can yet the lease of my true love control, Supposed as forfeit to a confined doom. The mortal … Continue reading

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“I am amazed, methinks, and lose my way/Among the thorns and dangers of this world.”

King John Act Five By Dennis Abrams ———————– Act Five:  John gives in to the Pope’s wish, but Pandolf is unable to call off the Dauphin.  As war breaks out, news arrives that the French reinforcements have been shipwrecked.  Suffering … Continue reading

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“Grief fills the room up of my absent child, /Lies in his bed, walks up and down with me,/Puts on his pretty looks, repeats his words,/Stuffs out his vacant garments with his form;/Then have I reason to be fond of grief.”

King John Act Four By Dennis Abrams —————————– Act Four:  Back in England, Hubert visits the cell where Arthur is being held, but, ultimately, cannot bring himself to use red hot irons to burn out young Arthur’s eyes.  At court, … Continue reading

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“Yet indiscretion thereby grows direct,/And falsehood falsehood cures, as fire cools fire/Within the scorched veins of one new burned.

King John Act Three By Dennis Abrams ——————————– Act Three:  After the wedding, Constance berates King Philip and the Duke of Austria for their weakness but is interrupted by the arrival of Cardinal Pandolf, the papal legate.  The Cardinal tells … Continue reading

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“And now he feasts, mousing the flesh of men/In undetermined difference of kings.”

King John Act Two By Dennis Abrams ——————————- ACT TWO:  The two armies confront each other at Angers.  The French claim the city for Arthur; King John demands it as his.  A citizen, acting as spokesman, vows loyalty to the … Continue reading

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