18 Matching Annotations
  1. Oct 2017
    1. he is an object of amusement that mediates coercion and asymmetric power relations.

      this objectification is not only a bi-product of war, it just made it easier as they had more access to vulnerable women.

  2. May 2016
    1. But true it is. From France there comes a power Into this scattered kingdom

      I believe that the understatement of the French invasion of England in the folio is a flaw. To understand the direction of the plot, the statement that France is mobilizing against the armies of Goneril and Regan is important for when one reads the battle scenes. Though the folio mentions French spies, neglecting to mention the mobilization of France makes the dissent against Goneril and Regan appear more ambiguous.

    2. No, he's a yeoman that has a gentleman to his son, for he's a mad yeoman that sees his son a gentleman before him.

      In the folio, the Fool more directly answers his own question regarding "whether a madman be a gentleman or a yeoman," and it is significant that the Fool negates and corrects Lear's answer of "A king, a king" with "No." When the Fool corrects Lear's 'wrong' answer, it could bias the reader's understanding of Lear's mental state to think of Lear as mad and wrong.

    3. I tax not you, you elements, with unkindness.

      I find it interesting that in the quarto, Lear says, "I task not you, you elements, with unkindness," while in the folio, Lear says, "I tax not you, you elements, with unkindness." Using "task" implies that the elements are given an obligation to Lear (imposed by Lear), while "tax" implies that the elements most certainly owe Lear (and are obligated by a greater force to comply, such as a legal one, compared to the self-imposed obligation to Lear implied by the word "task").

    4. all germens spill at once That makes ingrateful man.

      The fact that the line "That makes ingrateful man" stands on its own line in the folio version of the play makes the line that much more powerful when Lear ends the first part of one of his great speeches in the heath. The image conjured up by "all germens spill at once" is very strong, because the spilling of seed in this place of nothingness reminds us of the sub-theme of infertility in the play. The result of this spilling of seed--"That makes ingrateful man"--seems much more significant when it stands on a line of its own in the folio. The spilling of fertile seed into nothingness can only bring forth ingrateful [sic] offspring or make the parent figure ingrateful [sic] as well. The image is stronger when it stands on its own line to end this section of Lear's rambling speech.

    5. What's here

      It is significant that Kent asks "What's here" in the quarto edition compared to "Who's there" in the folio. The "who" indicates that Kent is inquiring about the identity and whereabouts of a person, while the "what" indicates that the unknown presence in the scene could be more ambiguous--such as a natural force or something that potentially has an inhuman quality. A human stripped down to its base nature, like Lear or Poor Tom in the scenes containing their madness and nakedness, could also be considered a "what." Therefore, I think it is powerful that, in the quarto, Kent presents this possibility of a stage presence with an ambiguous quality existing in the scene, because it fits in with Shakespeare's thematic use of chaos and perverted human nature in the play.

    6. Tears his white hair, Which the impetuous blasts with eyeless rage Catch in their fury and make nothing of; Strives in his little world of man to outscorn The to-and-fro-conflicting wind and rain. This night, wherein the cub-drawn bear would couch, The lion, and the belly-pinched wolf Keep their fur dry, unbonneted he runs, And bids what will take all.

      This section of the gentleman’s answer to Kent’s question regarding the whereabouts of King Lear only exists in the quarto. These eight and a half lines constitute one of the largest differences between the quarto and folio versions of Act III. The gentleman gives us a preview of Lear’s madness in the heath—telling us how the storm strikes Lear and how he attempts to fight back against it—and then relates the scene to dangerous predatory animals that would usually hunt in the night and in the elements. He essentially says that even such fierce creatures are taking cover from the storm, yet Lear still runs in it, rages against it, and thinks the storm will listen and react to his words. The shorter response of the gentleman in the folio neglects to provide us with this in-depth preview of Lear’s actions in the storm.

    7. Contending with the fretful elements; Bids the wind blow the earth into the sea, Or swell the curlèd waters 'bove the main That things might change or cease.

      In the folio, the gentleman answers Kent’s question about Lear’s whereabouts in a simpler manner. He just essentially discusses how Lear fights against the storm and entreats it to behave in a certain way. The four succinct lines set up the following scene (III.2) in which Lear both encourages and rages against the storm. These lines are also in the quarto, but in the folio, the word “element” in the quarto becomes plural as “elements,” and this small, one-letter change to make the word plural causes the storm to seem even bigger, stronger, and harsher. Without the next eight and a half lines that are only included in the quarto, the audience does not get an in-depth preview of Lear’s chaotic raging, and so the next scene, featuring Lear, is slightly more of a shock for the audience.

    8. Tears his white hair, Which the impetuous blasts with eyeless rage Catch in their fury and make nothing of

      These first few lines in the gentleman's reply that are not in the folio are especially powerful in incorporating major themes that continue throughout the play. The reference to Lear's "white hair" shows the theme of age in the play that is often connected to Lear's madness, and the "impetuous blasts" foreshadow the apocalyptic language and scenes that personify Lear's madness as the great chaos of the storm. The adjective "Eyeless" to describe "rage" brings in the theme of seeing and not seeing--as well as of deception. The "eyeless rage" also just literally shows that the storm has no human or animalistic features and so obviously cannot respond to Lear's entreating. The use of the word "nothing" continues the theme of nothingness throughout the play, and the storm makes Lear's hair into nothing--just as almost everything in the play is reduced to nothing. Unfortunately, the folio version does not contain these lines and thus does not have these immense connections to the play's major themes.

    9. Here's a night pities neither wise man nor fool

      It is interesting that, in the quarto version, the fool says "Here's a night pities neither wise man nor fool," while, in the folio version, the fool's sentence becomes plural: "Here's a night pities neither wise men, nor fools." When the sentence says "wise man nor fool," it seems that the fool implies that, of Lear and himself, one is a wise man and one is a fool--even though which character is the wise man or fool is not specified. When the sentence says "wise men, nor fools," it seems that the fool implies that, of Lear and himself, one could be wise, one a fool, or both characters could be wise men or fools. The situation seems a bit more vague. The answer to this question of characterization as wise or foolish is never explicitly answered in the quarto and folio versions of the play.

    10. smite

      I think the difference between "smite" in the quarto and "Strike" in the folio is significant because "smite" has a much more severe connotation than "Strike." The quarto version of "smite" fits in better with the apocalyptic language used by the characters in the heath and with Lear's mental apocalypse in Act III--where Lear's madness is even personified in the absolute chaos around him. "Smite" also incorporates a biblical connotation that fits in with the hellish chaos of the storm when Lear is on the heath.

    11. thou, all-shaking thunder

      Though simply a difference of line placement and a single comma, it is still significant that, in the quarto, a comma comes after "thou." The fact that there is a comma before and after "all-shaking thunder" in the quarto makes it an appositive phrase, and clarifies that Lear is directly addressing the thunder--an entity that has no ability to listen and react to him--thus more strongly showing Lear's mental degradation. The folio version does not use an appositive phrase, so the direct address of the thunder is not as clear.

    12. True, my good boy

      It is interesting that Lear calls the fool "my good boy" in the quarto, while he simply calls the fool "boy" in the folio. Calling him "my good boy" in the quarto denotes ownership, affection, and familiarity that it is not explicitly expressed in the folio version of this line.

    13. In such a night To shut me out?

      The folio differs in this sentence by Lear stressing the gravity of the storm and that his daughters abandoned him by reminding the audience that his daughters "shut me out" in "such a night as this." The quarto does not go through the extra trouble of once again reminding us how Lear's daughters shut him out.

    14. This is a brave night to cool a courtesan. I'll speak a prophecy ere I go. When priests are more in word than matter, When brewers mar their malt with water, When nobles are their tailors' tutors, No heretics burned but wenches' suitors; When every case in law is right, No squire in debt, nor no poor knight; When slanders do not live in tongues, Nor cut-purses come not to throngs; When usurers tell their gold i'th'field, And bawds and whores do churches build; Then shall the realm of Albion Come to great confusion. Then comes the time, who lives to see't, That going shall be used with feet. This prophecy Merlin shall make, for I live before his time.

      The Fool's prophecy that ends Act III.2 in the folio version of the play is one of the main, most striking differences between the quarto and folio in Act III. The Routledge Parallel Text Edition of King Lear attributes much of the prophecy to a Chaucerian parody where the land of Albion (England) shall come to great confusion and chaos, and the footnote interpretation of the Fool's words states that, intellectually despairing, he means "that both the world as it is and the world as it ideally should be are equally confusing and meaningless" (p. 204). The Fool's metatheatrical performance here in the folio directly addresses the audience by breaking the fourth wall, and indicates that the Fool is significant beyond the realm of the play. The Fool expresses that he even predates Merlin--an English legendary figure which no other character in the play is aware of. In addition, bringing in this idea of life becoming meaningless and chaotic in the realm of Albion would play to the contemporary audience's fears about the kingdom(s) and the succession during the reign of King James and continue the theme of political chaos brought about by Lear dividing the kingdom--an action that would horrify the paranoid contemporary English audience. I believe that this prophecy is an exceptionally important and powerful speech during the play, and it is unfortunate that it only appears in the quarto.

    15. I'll pray, and then I'll sleep.

      It is interesting that Lear's line regarding prayer only appears in the folio version. At first I thought that in a pre-Christian play one might not expect Lear to announce that he would go off to pray, but then I remembered that pagans and other pre-Christian peoples still prayed to certain deities or figures, and Lear has previously addressed Nature and other storm forces as if praying. However, he has not retired to go pray before. This line, only appearing in the folio version, could be interpreted in multiple ways: it could simply be a filler line, or it could show that Lear has so strongly internalized the betrayals and harm done to him that he has resorted to prayer as a comfort with which to deal with his hurt emotions or as a cry for help in his degraded state of nothingness.

  3. Mar 2016
    1. But thy eternal summer shall not fade,

      Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur.

    2. Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?

      Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.