Tag Archives: renaissance humanism

“I am fire and air; my other elements/I give to baser life.”

Antony and Cleopatra Act Five, Part Three By Dennis Abrams ——————— From A.D. Nuttall’s Shakespeare the Thinker: “Antony leaves cold, dry, military-political Rome for the wet, formless, erotic East (and South), for Egypt, much as Gustav von Aschenbach in Thomas … Continue reading

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“Give me my robe, put on my crown, I have/Immortal longings in me…”

Antony and Cleopatra Act Five, Part Two By Dennis Abrams ————————————– From Tony Tanner: “Cleopatra is, of course, above all a great actress. She can play with Antony to beguile him; she can play at being Isis, thus anticipating her … Continue reading

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“Think you there was, or might be, such a man/As this I dreamt of?”

Antony and Cleopatra Act Five, Part One By Dennis Abrams ———————————– Act Five:  When Antony dies, Cleopatra sees death as her only option, but she is prevented from stabbing herself by Caesar’s soldiers. When Dolabella reveals that Caesar intends to … Continue reading

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“Come, Let’s have one other gaudy night!”

Antony and Cleopatra Act Three, Part Two By Dennis Abrams ———————————— From A.C. Bradley: “The political situation and its development are simple. The story is taken up almost where it was left, years before, in Julius Caesar. There Brutus and … Continue reading

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“The oldest hath borne most; we that are young/Shall never see so much, nor live so long.”

King Lear Act Five, Part Four By Dennis Abrams ———————– To continue with Mark Van Doren: “As the third act opens we listen to a gentleman telling Kent that Lear has made the plunge: he has disappeared into a world … Continue reading

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“The worst is not/So long as we can say ‘This is the worst.’’’

King Lear Act Four, Part Two By Dennis Abrams ————————————– From Harold Bloom: “If we could speak of a poetic rather than dramatic center to the tragedy, we might choose the meeting between the mad King Lear and blind Gloucester … Continue reading

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“O, reason not the need! Our basest beggars.Are in the poorest thing superfluous.”

King Lear Act Two, Part One By Dennis Abrams —————————————– Act Two:  Edmund tells Edgar of their father’s anger and persuades him to flee, at which point Edgar decides to disguise himself as a beggar.  Meanwhile, Kent has attacked Goneril’s … Continue reading

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“In cities, mutinies; in countries, discord; in palaces, treason; and the bond crack’d ‘twist son and father…We have seen the best of our time.”

King Lear Act One, Part Two By Dennis Abrams ——————————— A couple of things to watch for and think about: 1.  Patterns of verbal imagery in the play, including those related to seeing, blindness and insight; the use of terms … Continue reading

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When my love swears that she is made of truth I do believe her,/though I know she lies…”

Shakespeare Sonnet #138 SONNET 138 When my love swears that she is made of truth I do believe her, though I know she lies, That she might think me some untutor’d youth, Unlearned in the world’s false subtleties. Thus vainly … Continue reading

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“Double, double toil and trouble,/Fire burn, and cauldron bubble.”

Macbeth Act Four, Part Two By Dennis Abrams ——————————————– Why is Macbeth seemingly cursed?  Why do people in (and out) of the theater refer to it as “The Scottish Play?” It is, perhaps, inevitable that a tragedy that lends witchcraft … Continue reading

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