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Dramaturg dilemma

GreenMan Theatre, which has become sort of my home-base stage the last few years, is opening its season this fall with a new Frankenstein adaptation. (I was Elizabeth for the second-draft developmental reading this past weekend; it's almost there and I think it's going to rock.)

I'm serving as dramaturg for the production, which I've decided pretty much obligates me to read Shelley Unbound: Discovering Frankenstein's True Creator so that I'll know whereof I speak should the authorship question come up in post-show discussions. (It probably won't, but Murphy's Law dictates that if I don't read the damn book, it will.)

Unfortunately for my determination, it appears that the local library system shares my reluctance to give this dude any money. Recognizing that this is a longshot, is there any chance someone has a copy I could borrow?


( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 29th, 2014 11:05 am (UTC)
There's a copy that's not checked out at Schaumberg Public. Just bring your local card and go when your local public is open so they can confirm for reciprocal borrowing.
Jul. 29th, 2014 11:22 am (UTC)
Thank you!!

I wonder why it didn't come up in LINKin search? I'm sure I've seen results from Schaumburg before... Hmmm, but the LINKin site doesn't show it as a member. Weird.

Edited at 2014-07-29 03:24 pm (UTC)
Jul. 29th, 2014 02:20 pm (UTC)
If you want a quicker and less annoying version, you might look at Mary Shelley (with Percy Shelley), The Original Frankenstein: Two New Versions: Mary Shelley's Earliest Draft and Percy Shelley's Revised Text, ed. Charles E. Robinson, Vintage, 2008. There's an introduction there that explains Robinson's manuscript study; he even reconstructs Mary's original draft before Percy got his "hey I'm a published poet, and you're only 18, honey!" hands on it.

Looking at the blurb for Shelley Unbound, it sounds like the author is reviving the notion held by many Victorian reviewers that certain things Could Not Possibly have been written by women . . . Grrr. Mary = author; Percy = betareader

Jul. 29th, 2014 03:25 pm (UTC)
I've actually already got the Robinson edition on reserve, and am rather looking forward to it.

Unfortunately, the position put forth in Shelley Unbound (and previously in The Man Who Wrote Frankenstein, which... I just ain't touching, sorry) is the one I need to read up on.

I've read enough about the Hart book to be confident I know what his arguments are and comfortable with dismissing them for my own personal purposes. But I feel obligated to actually read it in case someone brings it up at a post-performance talkback and I need to address it with my dramaturg hat on.

Edited at 2014-07-29 07:26 pm (UTC)
Jul. 29th, 2014 04:15 pm (UTC)
I've been teaching the book for years, but of course, college students are far less likely than random members of the general public to ask ridiculous questions . . .

One of these years, though, I'll probably get someone whose high school teacher firmly subscribed to the Percy Did It thesis, and who will therefore feel obligated to argue it loudly . . .
Jul. 29th, 2014 11:00 pm (UTC)
>"Grrr. Mary = author; Percy = betareader"

(Deleted comment)
Jul. 29th, 2014 08:25 pm (UTC)
/ refuses to be diverted onto the topic of editorial versus authorial intent

Very wise of you.

Percy was boy-toy in Switzerland (summer 1816), but contrary to the lore of the contest as one commonly hears it, Mary probably didn't finish the draft before they were married on December 30. So he was probably hubby before he had any significant hand in it.

I just can't with... pretty much any of the points of this dude's arguments, really.

Mostly I'd rather reread The Stress of Her Regard. Maybe I'll save it for a palate cleanser after I'm done putting together the cast packet and lobby displays. :-)

Edited at 2014-07-30 12:27 am (UTC)
(Deleted comment)
Aug. 9th, 2014 03:33 pm (UTC)
And actually, I was mistaken -- it appears she did finish the first draft of the novel in August of 1816.

The de Hart arguments are more biographical than stylometric, although I understand the earlier Lauritson book (the one that apparently can't be content with a homoerotic reading and must apply its resonance with himself to authorial intent, and therfore authorial identity) to be more stylometric in approach.
Jul. 29th, 2014 10:57 pm (UTC)
I hadn't heard about this. Have been busy far from academia in recent years.

AAARGH. ~barely suppressing urge to diatribe about Miss Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin's literary background from perspective as one of the, say, thousand people now living who have actually read all her father's fiction~

I'm glad that you've now got the book on reserve. I admire that you're going to answer those post-show questions with wisdom, wit and aplomb.

I ♥ that I get to have you as a friend. :-)
Jul. 30th, 2014 06:53 am (UTC)
I have had a copy of William Godwin's Caleb Williams sitting on my shelves since I was reading for orals. That might have been in another century. ;-) It got cut for time, and I still haven't . . .
Aug. 9th, 2014 03:36 pm (UTC)
Awww, thank you. :-)

Having made it a third of the way through the thing before I just couldn't stand it anymore, I've decided that if anyone brings it up, my response will be simple: "De Hart succeeds in proving that Percy could have written it, but not in the more rigorous task stated in his own introduction, proving that only Percy could have written it." Woe betide anyone who tries to press the matter further. :->
(no subject) - rnatwirede - Jan. 4th, 2015 03:31 pm (UTC) - Expand
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )


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