Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Grace's Annotated Bibliography (1) "A Grave Precedent: Historical Repetition in King Lear"

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For my paper, I decided to build off my Lear paper from earlier in the semester. It will be titled, "A Grave Precedent: Historical Repetition in King Lear". My thesis (in a nutshell) is that Lear is really a cautionary tale, written and performed in the throes of a turbulent political scene, and that this can be proved by taking a look at some of the finer points of Lear's character, and how closely they align with the tragic flaws found in some of Britain's earlier monarchs, (namely Queen Mathilde, Richard II, and Edward II), and that Shakespeare was intending to warn the population of the dangers and pitfalls that can be connected to such ill-fated rulers. 

For my source types in this bibliography, I chose to focus on my social and performance sources. 

I'll start off with my list of social sources. I found that a couple of them tended to overlap, so I will need to double-check to make sure that's acceptable. 

Bowles, Gaylie. Peer/Homie source. 
Gaylie is one of my friends in the afternoon class. We ran into each other, and discussed our papers briefly. In that conversation, I was able to really narrow down what I wanted the "legitimacy factor" (why it matters) to be, which was something I was really having trouble with before. 

The Literature Network Forums. Peer/Enthusiast sources.
 I joined up with a forum for literary discussion and posted some questions/ideas I had with regards to this paper. I figure this will be a good platform from which I can enrich my argument by gaining additional, widespread input from varied sources. http://www.online-literature.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?5895-Shakespeare-Discussion-Group

Siegfried, Brandie. Expert source. 
Dr. Siegfried is a professor here at BYU, whose emphasis of study is centered around the literature of the English Renaissance, particularly the works of Shakespeare. I had the privilege of taking a course from Dr. Siegfried a couple semesters ago, and I remember I was greatly intrigued by her perspective on Shakespeare. I will look forward to meeting with her and bouncing some ideas off her, and possibly getting some recommendations on some other experts I could contact with questions. 

Moving on to my performance sources:

King Lear (2008), Channel 4 Broadcasting. 
This version of the film cast Ian McKellen as King Lear. While we were studying King Lear, I watched this film for a little ways as I read along. I remember being struck by the energy McKellen gave to the role, and I felt it was an excellent, invigorating, and accurate portrayal of Lear's character. This will aid me in the explication of Lear's character, and my comparison to the historic rulers I will be discussing in this paper. 

Hiscock, Andrew, Lisa Hopkins, John J. Norton, Peter Silitoe. King Lear: A Critical Guide. London, Bloomsbury Publising, 2011. 
This guide to King Lear is essentially a research guide, aimed at aiding the researcher/writer to become more informed with accounts of various stage, television, and audio productions of the play, and notable critical history. 

After gathering some of these sources, I feel much more confident about where my paper is going, and how I will present my argument and findings. I look forward to finishing my writing on this!


  1. I love your title! It's very clever. I think the tie in to actual history will make for a great paper. King Lear as a cautionary tale makes it even more of an interesting read in my opinion.

  2. Grace, talking through my idea with you helped me a lot as well!

    Seeing as we have some simlilarities by way of the topic legitimacy, you might look at these sources and see if you they might help you.

    Bardseyeview “Bardseyeview.” Blogspot. 25 Dec. 2005. Web. 11 Nov. 2016.

    General rebuff about the anti-semitic themes throughout Shakespeare
    “Shakespeare loved England. He saw it as the premier expression of Western civilization. Ten of his 37 plays are English history plays, including an eight-play series. Their overriding theme is legitimacy; taken together they read like an updated version of Genesis and Exodus, the working out of which king or claimant for the throne reflecting the handing down of the Blessing from one Patriarch to the next.”

    Shakespeare a propagandist
    All pro-Tudor messaging

    They are both blog posts and while the main themes might not completely line up, some of the stuff they talk about was relevant for me, so hopefully it will be for you too!

  3. Many of these sources are prospective, so it is hard to tell if/how they will help your developing claim and paper. You certainly could've gotten into the Hiscock critical guide and identified some specific sources. Once you have a more developed paper you can/should reach out to the other social sources (though Gaylie was fine for now).

  4. I like it! Do you think that Shakespeare intended this as a warning for the rulers or the people? It sounds like you're saying he provided a guide, sort of, of what to do and what not to do as a ruler. So was that meant to be expressly pointed to them or does it apply to us common folk as well?

  5. Grace, I really like your title for this paper. It's interesting to grab the readers attention without giving too much away.