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 Post subject: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Thu Aug 15, 2019 1:18 pm 
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My mom had The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (The Tudor Text - Players Addition).... Which I now have

I started reading The Tempest and I'm lost with the English.
And this book doesn't have any footnotes.

Can someone recommend a good book that does provide the footnotes and explanations to figure out what the heck is going on?

Thanks

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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Thu Aug 15, 2019 5:02 pm 
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One does not "read" Shakespeare, one sees Shakespeare performed.

If you don't have a theater in your town that has a Shakespeare play running, then find one of the umpteen adaptations you can find on home video. Shakespeare rarely makes sense when "read" he always makes sense when performed live.

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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Thu Aug 15, 2019 5:16 pm 
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I find it hard to follow when performed. But reading it aloud can be helpful (as with all poetry).

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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Thu Aug 15, 2019 6:26 pm 
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I have an unabridged audio book that I got from Amazon which is well done and makes reading easier. Also Ignatius Press has critical editions of many Shakespeare plays that are useful.


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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Thu Aug 15, 2019 6:31 pm 
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This is the audio book. https://www.amazon.com/The-Tempest/dp/B005HV1MMM/


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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Thu Aug 15, 2019 6:56 pm 
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Thanks for the advice everyone.

Zeno, I appreciate the suggestions. I'll look into that critical edition from Ignatius

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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 9:43 am 
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Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:
I find it hard to follow when performed. But reading it aloud can be helpful (as with all poetry).

Yes. Reading Shakespeare out loud is probably the best approach to individual study. When I see a Shakespearian play, I prepare by reading it at home beforehand.

Shakespeare, BTW, is not all poetry -- but much/most is blank verse.

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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 2:45 pm 
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Do you guys realize that when you recommend reading it out loud that you're be actually agreeing with me that it has to be performed?

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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 3:32 pm 
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I don't regard the two as synonymous. When I think "performed," I think "Watching on TV or on a stage, trying to figure what the heck is going on because I have only understood about half of what was said."

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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 3:37 pm 
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You seem to have a different definition of "perform" and "read out loud" than I do; I opine that they are not equivalent. Performing requires reading out loud; reading out law does not require performing.

If you saw me reading out loud, you would be glad I was not performing. I could never do justice to:

I know a bank where the wild thyme blows,
Where oxlips and the nodding violet grows,
Quite over-canopied with luscious woodbine,
With sweet musk-roses and with eglantine:


Not blank, BTW.

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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 3:54 pm 
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While I agree plays are best when at least read aloud, if not performed, the simplest solution is the one most of us (lazy) students availed ourselves of - Cliff's Notes. Get a copy, familiarize yourself with the characters, the themes, plot, and so on. Historical context is always helpful. Then read the play. Read it again. Highlight/underline passages you don't understand. Hopefully, someone will have the same questions in class.

There. Was that so hard? Sheesh. You'd think nobody here ever did the same thing.

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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 5:18 pm 
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Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:
I don't regard the two as synonymous. When I think "performed," I think "Watching on TV or on a stage, trying to figure what the heck is going on because I have only understood about half of what was said."



When you read it out loud, you are performing the play, the thie "table read" is always the first step of actors learning a script, it us how actors "rehearse" until they learn it well enough to do a dress rehearsal

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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Sat Aug 17, 2019 10:08 am 
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Shakes did use words that are strange to our modern ears: e.g., Blue-Caps meaning Scots.

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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Sat Aug 17, 2019 10:40 am 
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lbt wrote:
Shakes did use words that are strange to our modern ears: e.g., Blue-Caps meaning Scots.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0O8uqAPCf7U

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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Sat Aug 17, 2019 10:09 pm 
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lbt wrote:
Shakes did use words that are strange to our modern ears: e.g., Blue-Caps meaning Scots.

You ain’t seen nothing yet: https://youtu.be/BaGHVWKrcpQ nar

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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2020 1:42 pm 
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Doom wrote:
Do you guys realize that when you recommend reading it out loud that you're be actually agreeing with me that it has to be performed?

They’re not actually agreeing with you, Doom, because you said:
Doom wrote:
One does not "read" Shakespeare, one sees Shakespeare performed.

If you don't have a theater in your town that has a Shakespeare play running, then find one of the umpteen adaptations you can find on home video. Shakespeare rarely makes sense when "read" he always makes sense when performed live.

Reading Shakespeare out loud is not SEEING Shakespeare PERFORMED.

Performances of Shakespeare plays take place after the actors have spent a lot of time understanding and rehearsing the lines.


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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2020 1:55 pm 
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p.falk wrote:
My mom had The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (The Tudor Text - Players Addition).... Which I now have

I started reading The Tempest and I'm lost with the English.
And this book doesn't have any footnotes.

Can someone recommend a good book that does provide the footnotes and explanations to figure out what the heck is going on?

Thanks

It would be costly to get a good book to explain each play, but if it’s just for one or two plays,I would recommend “Shakespeare Made Easy: Modern English Version Side-By-Side With Full Original Text”, available on Amazon.

Or this is similar but free, online:

https://www.sparknotes.com/shakespeare/

The modern English translations often don’t do justice to the poetry and beauty of Shakespeare’s original language but greatly help in understanding the original.


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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2020 2:23 pm 
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I find myself in complete agreement with DD ... a novel, but pleasing position.

To the OP -- go to your local library and check out a decent Shakespeare. Annotations will provide definitions of the language. Again, I find it helpful, probably necessary, to read the text in detail, grasp the language, and then watch the play.

I understand Shakespeare's Globe, though reeking of political correctness and woke activism, is now presenting, from time to time, Shakespeare in the language of the time ... pronunciation and accents and cadence. I saw a bit on TV and would require intense preparation to enjoy it ... it was like a foreign language. Perhaps a Brit, steeped in the dialects of the island, would do better. If I get back to London, I will see it.

If you are actually interested:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gPlpphT7n9s

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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2020 7:34 pm 
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Shakespeare’s Globe theatre is a wonderful experience. It’s built like it was in Shakespeare’s time. Tickets for the “yard”, the part of the theatre closest to the stage, are only £5. But you have to stand and there’s no roof above you and umbrellas are not allowed. It’s well worth £5 on a dry day if you don’t get sore standing for a long time! There are also more expensive areas with benches and a roof above, but only the benches in the back rows have backs.


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 Post subject: Re: Reading Shakespeare.... HELP!!!!!!!!!!
PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2020 10:20 pm 
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I'm to old to stand with the groundlings, but I love Shakespeare and would relish an afternoon at the Globe. One of our assignments, when I was an undergraduate in English literature, was to study the Globe and draw sets and write stage instructions for a production of an act from one of Shakespeare's plays. Given the paucity of sets and staging of the time.

You're fortunate to have been there.

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