Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Blogoshpere 16 January – 22 January 2012

Somewhat late but still here is a list of the most interesting and informative blog posts published last week. The "Early Modern" set includes meditations about Shakespeare’s Coriolanus triggered by the release of the new filmic adaptation with Ralph Fiennes and Gerald Butler. Some historically minded posts feature Dick Wittington, Henry Howard, the marriage of Henry VII and Yorkist Elizabeth. Furthermore there are two posts related to cultural history, one exploring the usefulness of the experimental-speculative divide in Early Modern natural philosophy, the other meditating about the Italian-Hungarian cultural relationships. Digital Humanists wrote about infographics, an educator’s vision about the near future of higher education, about open access, and reacted to Stanley Fish’s blog post about Digital Humanities. In the “Others” set one may read about Prezi’s new initiative. So, again I learned much last week, so happy reading to you as well!

Early Modern Studies:

Paul Edmondson in his “Coriolanus in Conversation” writes about Ralph Fiennes’s Coriolanus in a highly appreciative tone. The post is accompanied by an audio recording of a discussion led by Edmondson and Paul Prescott at the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust this week. Both the post and the discussion deserve attention.

Sylvia Morris’ “Ralph Fiennes as Coriolanus: noble warrior or boy of tears?” Is an informative post considering Fiennes in Shakespearean roles. Her last sentence sums up the post, so I’ll paste it here: “Looking at the Shakespearean roles Fiennes has taken during his career it’s easy to see how this one was a part he was waiting to take, while the film also hits the mark as a twenty-first century action movie.”

Liz Dollimore this time pointed at a source to Shakespeare’s Coriolanus in her post entitled “Shakespeare’s Sources – Coriolanus.” She convincingly argues that “Shakespeare’s main source for this play was Sir Thomas North’s translation of Plutarch’s Lives of the Noble Greeks and Romans.” Her argument consists in putting a quotation from Plutarch next to one in Coriolanus. The two parallel texts really speak for each other.

David Fallow makes a case in his “Shakespeare and the Pantomime Cat” for the claim that though Shakespeare and Dick Whittington seemed to have shared a fate leading from poverty to fame, neither of them followed this pattern.

Claire at The Anna Boleyn Files writes about the circumstances of Henry Howard, the Earl of Surrey’s execution. This post, entitled “19 January 1547 – Execution of Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey” is not so much his poetic appreciation but rather a historical introduction flavoured with a bit of poetry.

In another post, “18 January 1486 – Marriage of Henry VII and Elizabeth of York” Claire reveals the problematic nature of the marriage between the victor at Bosworth Field and Edward IV’s daughter. The complex procedure involved the interplay of the Parliament, the Pope, declaring Elizabeth to be a legitimate daughter of Edward.

Peter Anstley in his “Experimental Philosophy and the Straw Man Problem” reconsiders in an enlightening way their experimental-speculative distinction from the point of view of an objection.

Zsombor Jékely’s “Italy and Hungary in the Renaissance (Book review)” is a post that is fascinating to me, as it is a rather informative one on Italian-Hungarian cultural relationships back in the Renaissance and now.

Digital Humanities:

Another reaction to Stanley Fish by Geoffrey Rockwell entitled “The Digital Humanities and the Revenge of Authority” is a meditation that does not intend to argue with or refute Fish, but rather to change the concepts through which a meaningful discussion may emerge. Rockwell clarifies the field with phrasing three questions that can be the basis of further discussions. When exploring the first, he defines Digital Humanities in a rather telling way: “I personally think the digital humanities is a craft that brings computing practices, concepts and language to the building of digital artifacts in the humanities.” I think this is a claim worth pondering about.

Melissa Terrass’ post, “Infographic: Quantifying Digital Humanities” offers a digital infographics of Digital Humanities as a high resolution image and a really nice printable version. Great post for Digital Humanists and for others as well.

This is a thought-provoking—what else could it be??—interview with Cathy N. Davidson about her book, about her vision as an educator. The title is “Steve Wheeler’s Q&A with Cathy Davidson

Amanda French’s post, an open letter, “On Public Access to Peer-Reviewed Scholarly Publications” is an important contribution to the open access discussions. A must-read post, indeed.


Some fascinating news for Prezi users: as the title of the blog post claims “Introducing Prezi U – a community hub for everything Prezi in education” a new feature of Prezi was launched for educators which includes a library, a forum and articles to be read.

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