Gimme a Hand, Willya?

Hands are the agents of human action.  Feet may carry us.  Words may move us (metaphorically).  But it is hands to do the work.

You might even say that if eyes are mirrors to the soul, then hands are mirrors to the man (or woman).

And “hands” are a focal point in Titus Andronicus.
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Non-Titus Tangent

Just came across this great article

The Shakespearean Heroes Science Fiction Should Steal From

If you are at all interested in popular culture, this is a cool little (ok, not so little) article.  io9 is a science fiction website/blog/news site/discussion forum… what a great discovery… it just might become regular reading for me.

O, Brothers, Where Art Thou?

Titus Andronicus has four different sets of brothers.  I think this is more than any other play (except maybe for a history play (in those War of the Roses plays, the families can get pretty unwieldy).
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Yuks for Yucks

Titus Andronicus.  Dark play.  Tragedy.  Revenge tragedy.  Very bloody.  And yet…

There are numerous opportunities for laughs.  Admittedly, some are pretty sick laughs, but laughs nonetheless.
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Vengeance is Mine

Both Tamora and Titus are on missions of revenge.  Aaron, on the other hand, despite his claims to the contrary, is not out for revenge.  He is simply a villain, a role in which he takes the utmost pride and joy.
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Numbers: Midpoint (or, “Woe is me”… and not ironically, either)

Using Professor Rodes’ midpoint theory, let’s take a look at Titus Andronicus.

There are 2522 total lines in the play (using our Pelican Shakespeare text, the ones we are using for the entire series).  The midpoint comes at line 239 of Act Three, Scene One.
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Podcast 08: Titus and Tragedy

This week’s podcast includes a discussion tragedy and Titus, plus the launch of a new contest.

NOTE: This is a long podcast. In an attempt to lessen the file size, we used a bit sample rate of 22 kHz instead of our usual 48.  While this successfully lowered file size, it also lessened somewhat the audio quality of this podcast.  We apologize for any inconvenience.

1:20 — Text should be “1580s” instead of “1850s”
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It’s Contest Time Again!

OK, so you’re a director… and you’re about to mount a production of Titus Andronicus (or it could be a movie version)…

who would be your dream cast?


And, why, gentle reader, why should you do this???

a free Bill / Shakespeare Project tee-shirt to the best/most original/most well-reasoned casting director

That’s why!

Enter by commenting to this blog entry.  Contest entries due before 12 Noon (Pacific) on Thursday, August 27.  I’ll announce the winner in the last podcast of the month (Sunday, August 30).

Good luck!

What Makes a Man Start Fires?

Yesterday, we talked a little (or a little more than a little) about how Titus (and Titus Andronicus as a whole) fit into the whole Aristotelian definition of tragedy.  We came to the conclusion that Titus’ hamartia (or error in judgment) was his refusal to spare the life of Tamora’s eldest son, Alarbus, when his own son Lucius calls for a sacrifice to calm the spirits of his dead brothers (Titus’ dead sons).

So that’s the “what”… what about the “why”?  Why does he make this decision?  And why does he make the decisions that further his reversal of fortune?
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The Tragedy of Titus

Yesterday, we discussed the Aristotelian definition of tragedy, and how it centered around three main concepts:

  • reversal of fortune
  • hamartia
  • anagnorisis

Let’s start discussing Titus Andronicus with the last one and move backward…
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