The following is excerpted from my senior thesis in performance at the University of Pennsylvania, supervised by Cary Mazer. To thine own self be true, and it shall follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man. —Vivienne Kensington, Legally Blonde “What if we just call you ‘Hell’?” […]Read more "A Study of Performance: All’s Well that Ends Well, part 1."
Disclaimer: I actually do not like Romeo and Juliet. I have to be honest. Part of my dislike of the play comes from the fact that two summers ago I worked for the Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival in the box office and they happened to be doing R&J. I had to wait for my carpool buddy, who […]Read more "Romeo y Julieta, Teatro Helénico"
(Continued from “A Tale of Two Genres: All’s Well that Ends Well”) In Measure for Measure, written earlier, Shakespeare presents us with the exact opposite. He arrests the control of the quasi-comedy from women entirely and places it in the hands of the Duke, who becomes the dramaturgical puppet master. In this simple maneuver, Measure […]Read more "A Tale of Two Genres: Measure for Measure"
Midway through Shakespeare’s career, Renaissance playwrights became increasingly discontented with the contemporary generic limitations of comedy and tragedy. Shakespeare’s solution, as always, was to completely ignore the structure of both genres and write plays that could fit into neither. Thus, during the early years of the reign of King James I, he wrote three so-called […]Read more "A Tale of Two Genres: Alls Well that Ends Well"
Courtroom Scene: the Exercise of Power Antonio, Shylock, and Portia’s diverse objectives and power relations unite in the courtroom and counter each other: Portia wants to save Antonio’s life, Antonio wants Bassanio to appreciate his immense sacrifice, and Shylock wants his vengeance. In what he thinks is his ultimate sacrifice, Antonio paints himself as the […]Read more "The Disenfranchised and the Martyr: Merchant of Venice part 2"
The Merchant of Venice is an examination of religion, justice, and power gilded with a love story. It is predicated on the idea of commerce, ownership, and legal property, although the latter two often hinder the objectives of the characters. Portia is frustrated with lack of autonomy under her father’s will; Antonio is trapped in […]Read more "The Disenfranchised and the Martyr: The Merchant of Venice part 1"
A while ago, College Humor, I believe, produced an interesting video about our age-old desire to go back to the “better days” of the past (not to get too political, but the Daily Show with Trevor Noah did something similar at a Trump rally). In this video, Girl #1 entered a room in a different […]Read more "The Misogyny of Shakespeare’s Theater?"
Alright folks. Stop what you’re doing right now. Right…now…there you go. Congrats you put down the knitting, the political treatise, the politico article, the Buzzfeed quiz, the snapchat (NO you may not snapchat my blog post). Put them all down and go to this link (after you finish reading this paragraph at least). This is […]Read more "A Midsummer Night’s Dream: Emma Rice’s 1st Victory"
Vamos a hablar sobre la “universalidad” de Shakespeare. La gente que discute sobre Shakespeare usualmente pertenecen a dos grupos: A) Shakespeare es universal. Todos lo aman cuando ven su obra y él captura la condición humana, etcétera, etcétera. B) Shakespeare es un gran escritor del teatro que definitivamente mostraba las luchas comunes de mucha gente, […]Read more "Shakespeare en Kabul: es universal?"
So, for a quick summary: there were two competing medical theories in the Renaissance. 1) Humoralism, also known as Galenism. Think the four humors and bloodletting. Bile. All that fun stuff stretching back to Hypocrites. And 2) Paracelsianism, which was a combination between a slightly better informed science (emphasis on the slightly) and alchemy. […]Read more "Romeo and Juliet: Critique of Medical Theory"