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Jessica L. Malay

6 Elizabeth Hardwick’s material negotiations Jessica L. Malay Hardwick New Hall, now in the hands of the National Trust, is represented on its web page with a short descriptor: ‘An Elizabethan Masterpiece’. This descriptor sits about two-thirds down the page, underneath a stunning westerly view of the house. To those unfamiliar with the house, its relationship to Elizabeth Hardwick, Countess of Shrewsbury may not be at first apparent, though the initials ‘ES’ in carved openwork decorating the tops of the six banqueting houses may intrigue and elicit the

in Bess of Hardwick
Denim and silk
Robert Shaughnessy

. Perhaps taking his cue from Ralph Koltai’s pop-art settings for the National Theatre six years earlier (see Chapter V ), designer Christopher Morley rendered Arden non-realistically: for some reviewers, by what appeared to be organic material, in the shape of ‘hanging wooden poles’ (Michael Billington, Guardian , 13 June), ‘a grove of bamboos or an assortment of organ pipes’ (J. C. Trewin

in As You Like It
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John Drakakis

, is followed by a second claim that is, in part, based upon the first. While we may be uncertain about the precise chronology of the sources that Shakespeare drew on, the fact that antecedent texts exerted a pressure on his own writing raises a question about the dramatist’s ‘originality’: In conclusion one word about Shakespeare’s sources and his originality. I look upon Shakespeare as the great architect, who gifted with a truly divine talent gave the materials their beautiful shape. The

in Shakespeare’s resources
Author: John Drakakis

A substantial rethinking of the field of Shakespeare’s ‘sources’ that re-evaluates the vocabulary initiated by Geoffrey Bullough in his monumental Narrative and Dramatic Sources of Shakespeare. Beginning with a revaluation of Bullough, the book addresses issues such as the nature of con-text, influence versus confluence, intertextuality and the ways in which the term has been interpreted, and the manner in which Shakespeare returned to and developed earlier motifs, situations, memes and dramatic forms. This approach raises questions of how Shakespeare read, what was available to him and how this material may have circulated and filtered into the theatre; it also considers the ways in which a study of the materials available to the practising dramatist can be considered a vital part of theatrical activity, and something wholly different from what used to be regarded from the point of view of scholarly investigation as a relatively uninteresting activity.

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The elephant in the graveyard
John Drakakis

expect , he always kept an especially sharp look-out for usable material, sometimes imitating current crowd- pleasers from rival theatres, sometimes reworking an old standby that was perhaps gathering dust in the company archives. … Shakespeare read plays in print as well as those being performed on the stages of the inns, courtyards, court, private theatres, and public playhouses that constituted his working world. 8 Miola is not alone in shuttling between empirically

in Shakespeare’s resources
John Drakakis

difficulties he must have overcome when writing history plays based on Hall and Holinshed: the opportunities afforded him for dramatic scenes by Plutarch, Lodge or Cinthio; the skill with which he avoided the weaknesses of previous plays on the same subjects; the manner in which he interwove materials taken from different authorities (as in Lear ); and how he changed the tone and purport of a story (as in As You Like It and Othello ). 7 The emphasis upon the comparative nature of the study

in Shakespeare’s resources
John Drakakis

point in his argument, as we have seen, is with the fluidity of performance and its necessary ‘collaborative economies’, 2 in contrast to the authority of the printed and edited text. Indeed, he goes on to add that the realisation of the text in performance ‘is no less than a transmutation that thrives on “surplus value,” the semantic and semiotic overcharge, that results when a verbally composed representation submits to material (voiced, corporeal, and other audible and visual) articulations’. 3 Much later in his argument

in Shakespeare’s resources
Theatre, form, meme and reciprocity
John Drakakis

we might call the Elizabethan unconscious, and that find topographical echoes in plays such as Hamlet or Othello , offer extended narratives of contemporary psychoanalytical thinking that filtered through piecemeal into the dramatic writing of the period. Such texts – though they were, perhaps, analytical by early modern standards – contain what we might call ‘creative’ elements: mixtures of anecdote, folk wisdom and other non-factual detail. And if we add to this material texts such as Arthur Golding’s 1567 translation

in Shakespeare’s resources
John Drakakis

pressures imposed upon them by the present. All of these elements taken together facilitate the shaping of communal and individual identities, and they contribute to the excavation and reinvigoration of historical models along with the piecemeal discarding of practices that are no longer useful. Whereas intertextuality frequently seeks to establish empirically the relationship between particular texts, the range of material out of which they may be constructed could well pose a challenge to the linear and hierarchical pattern of

in Shakespeare’s resources
John Drakakis

rue their erstwhile mutual hostility. In the case of Twelfth Night , Shakespeare returned to the device of using twin characters that he had previously used in The Comedy of Errors , and he returned to material he had used in The Taming of the Shrew in the later play Much Ado About Nothing . In the case of plays that are never lumped together, his critical view of military heroism that surfaces in the Henry IV plays and in Henry V is revisited even more critically in Troilus and Cressida . Also, in the

in Shakespeare’s resources