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Re: [mythsoc] A Tale of Two Professors

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  • David Bratman
    ... It seemed to me that the argument of the article you linked to was that _listening_ to a poet s reading of his own poetry should not be taken as the
    Message 1 of 6 , Dec 1, 2004
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      At 11:26 AM 12/1/2004 -0500, Lizzie wrote:

      >I recently came across a funny site about poetry that took the opposite
      >stance, that it should not be read aloud because that was "artificial" or
      >some such argument.

      It seemed to me that the argument of the article you linked to was that
      _listening_ to a poet's reading of his own poetry should not be taken as
      the definitive interpretation. That might not always be true, but it's a
      different point. I was in any case talking of reading poetry aloud, not
      listening to someone else read it aloud. If, as the article suggests, some
      can read silently as if they were reading aloud, they might get out of
      poetry what the rest of us are missing. But few have that talent.


      At 09:04 AM 12/1/2004 -0800, Debra Murphy wrote:

      >I daresay it's ultimately a matter of taste, but it strikes me that those
      >who cannot bear Shakespeare-in-performance are probably the sorts of people
      >who either don't care much for theatre anyway, or who live primarily inside
      >their heads, as it were; who have so specific a construct in their minds for
      >what the play's about that they cannot stand to see it done otherwise.

      I'm not sure if that's the problem - I believe in Shakespeare dramatized,
      but I'm one of the people allergic to the whole idea of dramatizing LOTR
      and specifically disappointed with the Jackson version. The difference, of
      course, is that Tolkien dramatized is no longer Tolkien, but Shakespeare
      dramatized is the essence of Shakespeare. Perhaps the anti-performers in
      Shakespeare studies are the people who haven't figured that out - who,
      again, in Tolkien's words haven't realized that drama is a separate art
      from pure literature.

      A similar problem comes up in music. Some persist in thinking of the score
      as the "real" music, but it is nothing of the kind. Ontologically, a score
      is not music at all: it's instructions for performing music. The music
      does not exist until it is performed. Something similar could be said of a
      playscript.

      David Bratman
    • Mike Foster
      Lizzie, Your site is funny as in queer not as in ha-ha. I m with David, and I so advise my students: read it aloud or hear it done so by recordings of the
      Message 2 of 6 , Dec 2, 2004
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        Lizzie,
        Your site is funny as in queer not as in ha-ha. I'm with David, and I
        so advise my students: read it aloud or hear it done so by recordings of
        the poet. Dylan Thomas and T.S. Eliot are examples of two whose work is
        better heard than read. I did not appreciate what a magnificent and
        under-rated poet Conrad Aiken was until I heard Cademon recordings he made.

        Cheers,
        Mike

        David Bratman wrote:

        >At 11:26 AM 12/1/2004 -0500, Lizzie wrote:
        >
        >
        >
        >>I recently came across a funny site about poetry that took the opposite
        >>stance, that it should not be read aloud because that was "artificial" or
        >>some such argument.
        >>
        >>
        >
        >It seemed to me that the argument of the article you linked to was that
        >_listening_ to a poet's reading of his own poetry should not be taken as
        >the definitive interpretation. That might not always be true, but it's a
        >different point. I was in any case talking of reading poetry aloud, not
        >listening to someone else read it aloud. If, as the article suggests, some
        >can read silently as if they were reading aloud, they might get out of
        >poetry what the rest of us are missing. But few have that talent.
        >
        >
        >At 09:04 AM 12/1/2004 -0800, Debra Murphy wrote:
        >
        >
        >
        >>I daresay it's ultimately a matter of taste, but it strikes me that those
        >>who cannot bear Shakespeare-in-performance are probably the sorts of people
        >>who either don't care much for theatre anyway, or who live primarily inside
        >>their heads, as it were; who have so specific a construct in their minds for
        >>what the play's about that they cannot stand to see it done otherwise.
        >>
        >>
        >
        >I'm not sure if that's the problem - I believe in Shakespeare dramatized,
        >but I'm one of the people allergic to the whole idea of dramatizing LOTR
        >and specifically disappointed with the Jackson version. The difference, of
        >course, is that Tolkien dramatized is no longer Tolkien, but Shakespeare
        >dramatized is the essence of Shakespeare. Perhaps the anti-performers in
        >Shakespeare studies are the people who haven't figured that out - who,
        >again, in Tolkien's words haven't realized that drama is a separate art
        >from pure literature.
        >
        >A similar problem comes up in music. Some persist in thinking of the score
        >as the "real" music, but it is nothing of the kind. Ontologically, a score
        >is not music at all: it's instructions for performing music. The music
        >does not exist until it is performed. Something similar could be said of a
        >playscript.
        >
        >David Bratman
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
        >Yahoo! Groups Links
        >
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        >


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