Shakespeare and Quotation

King's College London August 6, 2016 3:45 pm - 5:15 pm

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Kevin Petersen (University of Massachusetts, United States), Kate Rumbold (University of Birmingham, United Kingdom)

Shakespeare is the most frequently quoted English author of all time. But Shakespeare was also a frequent quoter himself, and many of his leading characters are masters of this favoured rhetorical practice. What is it about Shakespeare’s language that invites extraction and repetition? What connections can we draw between Shakespeare’s own creative borrowings, and

the pieces of his plays and poems that have subsequently been admired as poetic beauties or wise sententiae? What role has selective quotation played in creating and recreating Shakespeare’s reputation—and what creative new uses have been made of his language? This seminar invites participants to consider the significance of quotation in creating and recreating Shakespeare. It welcomes papers that examine the creative uses of quotation and misquotation, both in and of Shakespeare’s work.

Topics might include: the role of quotation in the work of Shakespeare and his contemporaries; quotation in source study and reception study; the significance of commonplacing, anthologizing, and sententiae; the quotation and misquotation of Shakespeare in fiction, drama, poetry, film, and digital culture; quotation’s contribution to Shakespeare’s posthumous reception; and new resources for the study of quotation.

Kate Rumbold is a Lecturer in English Literature at the University of Birmingham, whose research focuses on the reception and quotation of Shakespeare. Her book, Shakespeare and the Eighteenth-Century Novel: Cultures of Quotation from Samuel Richardson to Jane Austen, and her edited collection, Shakespeare and Quotation (with Dr Julie Maxwell), will be published by Cambridge University Press.

Kevin Petersen is a Lecturer in the English Department at the University of Massachusetts Lowell. He is completing a book on the uses of Ovidian poetics and Tudor historiography, and he has work forthcoming on Shakespeare’s Lucrece. He has presented his research at a number of professional conferences.