By Steve Mentz
We'd like a poetic historical past of the sea, and Shakespeare may also help us locate one. There’s extra genuine salt within the performs than we would count on. Shakespeare’s dramatic ocean spans the God-sea of the traditional international and the significant blue vistas that early sleek mariners navigated. all through his occupation, from the outlet shipwrecks of The Comedy of error in the course of the Tempest, Shakespeare’s performs determine the sea as stunning actual truth and mind-twisting image of swap and instability. To fathom Shakespeare’s ocean – to head right down to its backside - this book’s chapters concentrate on various things that people do with and in and close to the ocean: fathoming, protecting watch, swimming, beachcombing, fishing, and drowning. Mentz additionally units Shakespeare’s sea-poetry opposed to glossy literary sea-scapes, together with the mammoth Pacific of Moby-Dick, the rocky coast of Charles Olson’s Maximus Poems, and the lyrical waters of the postcolonial Caribbean. Uncovering the depths of Shakespeare’s maritime international, this e-book attracts out the centrality of the ocean in our literary culture.>
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Additional resources for At the Bottom of Shakespeare's Ocean (Shakespeare Now)
In his play, as in our world, little islands lie encircled by Ocean. Shipwreck with Spectators The sea is right up against the skin of the shore with a tide as high as this one . . (“December 22nd,” The Maximus Poems) 20 At the Bottom of Shakespeare’s Ocean The sea surrounds this play, but we don’t see it much. It’s hard to pin down. 1, in which a crowd of shore-bound characters stand in the position of Miranda in The Tempest, gathered on the coast of Cyprus to watch the aftermath of a great storm.
157) link him to Spain, the greatest seagoing empire of the early seventeenth century, advertises his connection to the maritime world in a collection of epithets and phrases. 17) to draw Othello back. 338–9). 60). 150). 155), turn on watery figures. Iago’s salt-language forms a halfhidden pattern around him. The sea, itself mysterious, may not clarify his motives, but it epitomizes his power. Iago’s maritime vocabulary underlines his opacity and his ability to reshape himself at every moment. In addition to his habitual references to sexual “salt,” another key maritime term for Iago is “compass,” a word that in Shakespeare’s lifetime was shifting meanings as it came more frequently to identify the essential tool for finding out direction at sea.
367), and he insists that his tools can reorder his world. Iago presents himself as mastermind and improvisational artist, and it’s noteworthy that his early hymn to self-sufficiency operates in a landed context. 320–1), the land-centered image implies an Iago who cherishes life on shore. 378) extends this purported rejection of water. But longing for dry land and stability seems just a mask to gull Iago’s fool and purse; Iago’s heart remains unknowable precisely because it lies, metaphorically, in the deep sea.
At the Bottom of Shakespeare's Ocean (Shakespeare Now) by Steve Mentz