Monday, 14 February 2011

And so to bed…

Well, I feel like going to bed. It's been a long day. I will say though that I really enjoyed my seminar with the 3rd-years. We did Munday's conservative, poor-but-interesting The Downfall of Robert, Earle of Huntington from 1599 (crudely hacked into two not very good plays) in which Robin is a thoroughly good aristocratic chap and never poses any sort of threat to feudal society, and Geoffrey Trease's 1930 socialist propagandist take on Robin, Bows Against The Barons.

The class really enjoyed the Trease: he's pretty realistic and writes characters and plots with considerable facility. And of course, he's completely right. It's a fascinating negotiation of 1930s debates about socialism: the relationship of vanguard parties to the proletariat, the dangers of Strong Leaders, the need to reject racial division, monarchy, religion and hierarchies. Highly recommended.

Next week it's a pair of plays on the thorny subjects of class and money: Massinger's A New Way to Pay Old Debts and Carryl Churchill's Serious Money.

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