Shakespeare Performed: Essays in Honor of R.A. Foakes

Shakespeare Performed: Essays in Honor of R.A. Foakes

Shakespeare Performed: Essays in Honor of R.A. Foakes

Shakespeare Performed: Essays in Honor of R.A. Foakes

Synopsis

Many of the contributors to this collection, including E. A. J. Honigmann, M. M. Mahood, Jonathan Bate, and Stanley Wells (among others), have been centrally involved in examining, promoting, and sometimes questioning the critical dominance of the stable Shakespeare text, particularly as a result of performance. The essays range from the traditional poetical and theater history inquiries through bibliographical examinations and hermeneutical interpretations.

Excerpt

Although petruccio proclaims to his good friend hortensio in The Taming of the Shrew that “twixt such friends as we / Few words suffice,” the contributors to this volume of essays come together with more than a few words to celebrate R. A. Foakes—”Reg” to his friends—not only for his outstanding scholarship and publications but for his role as dedicated and generous teacher and mentor to all of us, his undergraduate and graduate students, collaborators, and colleagues.

Reg completed his Ph.D. at the University of Birmingham and was one of the three original Fellows of its Shakespeare Institute in Stratford-upon-Avon. in a long and distinguished career, he also taught at the University of Durham, Yale University, the University of Toronto, the University of California, Santa Barbara, the University of Kent, Canterbury, where he founded the Department of English and American Literature and served as Professor and as Dean of Faculty, and finally at the University of California, Los Angeles, where he also held a Professorship. Whether teaching Shakespeare and Renaissance drama or the Romantics, his other major field of study, his lectures were infused with a brilliant command of an astonishing range of material that captivated his audience, and his seminars and tutorials with that endless energy, quizzical look, and quiet authority that made his students want to work very hard to keep up with him. in and out of the classroom he was a superb and demanding teacher, never satisfied until his students demonstrated that they could match his own breadth of knowledge of every field that contributed to the study of literature and drama, whether Renaissance or Romantic, medieval or modern.

His publications in the field of Shakespeare and Renaissance drama stretch from his landmark 1961 edition with R. T. Rickert of Henslowe’s Diary (and later on his own the two volume The Henslowe Papers, much prized by book collectors) through to his numerous critical editions, produced over five decades, of the plays of Shakespeare and his contemporaries, including The Revenger’s Tragedy, the Comedy of Errors, Henry viii, Much Ado About Nothing, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Mac . . .

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