Tag Archives: Shakespeare

Shakespeare’s View on Ageing; Focus on King Lear (Published)

Ageing or Aged people have always been a matter of critical approach with lots of associated considerations. Hence, Shakespeare, though a universal writer, has not been able to keep himself out of the thoughts of society in regard of Ageing. This paper tries to investigate the approach of Shakespeare to the Aged people. Keeping social norms in mind it is difficult to find a neutral point of view in case of aged people. So, this paper aims at discovering the ideology that Shakespeare has been bound by about Aged people and Ageism. For this King Lear is focused here, as a text, where Shakespeare’s view on ageing, as a writer, can be found and for this, the whole text is to be read with critical eye to find out how he sees the old people.

Keywords: King Lear, Shakespeare, gerontology

The German Shakespeare (Published)

Over The past four hundred years, Shakespeare has played a significant role within a European framework, particularly, where a series of political events and ideologies were being shaped. The birth of the nation during the late 18th and 19th centuries, the first and second world wars, the process of European unification during the 1990s, are a case in point. This part challenges the idea of an all-encompassing universal Shakespeare by demonstrating that Shakespeare and his plays transmitted across different histories, languages, and traditions meant something significantly different in these geographical contexts. Rejecting the existence of a universally absolute and singular Shakespearean meaning, I attempt to demonstrate that Shakespeare is always what he is imagined to be in a cultural and historical context. The various local and national appropriations and the universality of the cultural icon, “Shakespeare”, clash in the daily practice of interpreting, performing, and teaching his plays. This paper discusses Shakespeare’s appropriation and performance in East Germany. It focuses on the theatrical production and its cultural context in this country.

Keywords: Context, East Germany, Performance, Shakespeare, appropriation

A Fresh Look at Shakespeare’s Dramaturgy: Towards an Orientalist Approach to ‘Othello’ (Published)

Much ink has been spilt over Shakespeare’s Othello​and the controversy over its main concerns, themes and aims. While some critics maintain that the themes of prejudice, love, faith and unbridled jealousy are the focus of the play, other scholars argue that the play is a story about ambition, human frailty and the destruction of an innocent and real love. This paper advances the claim that, through its nuances and subtleties, Shakespeare’s Othello provides much more to ponder and can be equally perceived as a story about the clash and collision of two different cultures, human relationships and racial problems. Using Edward Said’s theory of orientalism and imperialism as a foundation for analyzing and reinterpreting Shakespeare’s Othello, the study will also showcase how through his speech and action, the most intriguing character Iago serves primarily as an agent of orientalism.

Keywords: Imperialism, Othello, Shakespeare, cultural clashes, orientalism

Staging Shakespearean Play: A Comparative Study of Past and Present (Published)

This paper aims at illustrating the difficulties and differences of staging Shakespearean drama then and now. While writing this paper strictly keeping in mind the facts that Shakespearean plays were written for the sixteenth century audience, based on the historical and cultural background of Shakespeare’s time. There are multiple differences and difficulties the actors faced and are facing both then and now. Firstly, the stage of Shakespearean time was different from now; it had both the advantages and disadvantages of technicality. Shakespearean stage was open from all sides and the entry and exit of the stage was visible for everyone whereas the contemporary stage is one side open and three sides closed, making the postures and actions for the players difficult keeping in mind that they need to mostly face the audience. On one hand the contemporary players face the complications of staging the language, culture and behavior of the sixteenth century English folks, on the other hand the actors of Shakespearean time found it difficult to entertain the audience because of lack of female actors which was prohibited during the time of Shakespeare, for example in Twelfth Night, the role of Viola was played by a male actor playing a female character who was disguised as a male creating farce and complications. Staging Shakespeare in the contemporary times has proved to be quite difficult as there are multiple modes of entertainment, also the audience is difficult to please due to the well-known plots being used and reused in different versions of adaptations of Shakespearean dramas on stage, in films and television soaps. There is an alienating effect for the contemporary audience as the chorus, music, language, costume and props constantly remind them of the distance between the generations, therefore making it hard to keep them interested.

Keywords: Actor and Actress, Modern theatre, Shakespeare, Stage

Adaptation of Shakespeare’s Plays into Films: The Dark Side (Published)

To what extent our innermost feelings can be revealed through our works? The unbearable face of human being cannot be hidden and what a director shot in a film may reveal the real sense of what is hidden from our eyes. Thus directors sometimes try to hide their dark side behind such interesting movies after having modified the events of the original text to achieve their end. This paper, however, is an overview about the technique of adaptation which varies from one adaptationist to another depending on the historical background of the screenplay writer. Although the director succeeds to project what is on one side of his curtain, he fails to hide what is on the other side that discloses his innermost feelings

Keywords: Adaptation, Dark side, Masochism, Sadism, Shakespeare, Vishal Bhardwaj

INTERTEXTUALITY- FOREIGN INFLUENCE ON THE ARABIC POETIC DRAMA (Published)

This study seeks to examine the relationship between Aḥmad Shawqī’s The Death of Cleopatra (Shawqī 1929), one of the early Arabic poetic plays, and Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra (1607). The study provides a rationale as to the reasons behind assuming an existence of influences over Shawqī as he set out to write this play, proving all along Shawqī’s incontrovertible prior knowledge of Shakespeare’s Tragedies, particularly Antony and Cleopatra. The study ventures beyond the mere scrutiny of a literary work- together with the nonliterary details derived from history, for example- to an evaluation of Shawqī’s adaptation of Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra. The study reveals that Shawqī was unquestionably reproducing Antony and Cleopatra when he wrote his play. This reproduction figures in many forms: borrowing, paraphrasing, stilisierung simulation, etc. Apart from these strategies of imitation, the study, however, sheds light on the poetic elements where Shawqī showcases his originality as a playwright who reframes what he adapts from Shakespeare and Plutarch (See Plutarch 1950, pp. 441-488) to be in line with his own literary thought and ideological philosophies.

Keywords: Cleopatra, Intertextuality, Literary Influence, Shakespeare, Shawqī

IDEOLOGICAL PUPPETS: A LACANIAN-ALTHUSSERIAN ANALYSIS OF WOMEN IN SHAKESPEARE’S TRAGEDIES (Published)

There is no consensus regarding Shakespeare’s attitudes towards women. Some, like James Shapiro, deem him “the most noble feminist of them all” [sic] (270), whereas others like David Mann argue that he had a “scant concern” for the feelings of women (22). Whichever might be the case, it is often argued that Shakespeare’s rendering of women in his tragedies differs drastically from the way he has portrayed the heroines of his comedies. The reason for this double standard could be analyzed in the context of Shakespearean drama and the attitudes of the Renaissance society towards women. This paper intends to argue that the reason for this incongruity stems from the way that women were socially constructed in the era and as much culturally conditioned. To find out the underlying base of this construction, this study endeavors to examine the subjectivity of women in Shakespeare’s tragedies through the Lacanian- Althusserian dialectic of identity formation. What this paper seeks to accomplish is to demonstrate that the Lacanian-Althusserian dialectic provides a more comprehensive and lucrative explanation for the process of subject formation than just a psychoanalytical or structuralist Marxist approach. The Lacanian-Althusserian dialectic focuses on the close affinity between the Lacanian notion of linguistic alienation and the misperceived identity of the infantile period, and the Althusserian concept of ideological interpellation and the claim regarding individuals’ being “always already subjects” in society. After applying these notions to the women who populate his tragedies, this study aims at positing that these women are the pure embodiment of the ideological values of their epoch, ideologies that deprive of them of any autonomy and individuality.

Keywords: Althusser, Lacan, Shakespeare, Subjectivity, Tragedies