Love and scandal are the best sweeteners of tea. —Henry Fielding

08 July 2010

Read, Read, Read Part V

A couple of thoughts before I tell you what I've been reading:
  1. I am trying out a new Amazon thing which does links and images and stuff. We'll see how well it works.
  2. I am not too behind on my reading, but I am not exactly racing through these lists, either.
  3. According to my tallies, I am 28% done with the Critical Race Theory list and 27% done with the Parisian Avant-garde list. While I am 47% done with my Early Modern England reading list, I am only 21% finished with my Violence list. Sigh. Overall I am okay, but this is way out of balance.
The Duchess of Malfi (Arden Early Modern Drama)So, since the last time I posted, I have read:

John Webster's The Duchess of Malfi. I am still touting these amazing Arden editions that are just coming out. They are amazing for anyone interested in Early Modern drama. This particular edition, for instance, includes a comprehensive performance history of the play as well as absolutely invaluable textual help. As I read other editions of these plays, their poverty in comparison with the Arden editions is most evident.

Also, I have decided I absolutely love John Webster. I unequivocally loved Malfi and after also reading his The White Devil, which was also on my Early Modern list, I am completely sold. He is so good. The plays are cruel and exciting and have really extraordinary female characters.

Thomas Middleton and William Rowley's The Changeling is less interesting, more straightforward, and has a kind of tidy moral at the end that I found boring and trite. Compared to the two awesome Webster plays, The Changeling was downright boring. Way less intrigue and fewer twists. I am loving this Early Modern Drama list, by the way. These plays are so exciting! I know they are four hundred years old, but they are eminently playable. As playable as Hamlet, and I mean that honestly.

I also recently finished Sharon P. Holland's Raising the Dead: Readings of Death and (Black) Subjectivity, which I liked at the beginning, but which became less theoretical (and less interested in death) as it went on. On the other hand, I raced through José Esteban Muñoz's Disidentifications: Queers of Color and the Performance of Politics, which, in addition to being a very easy and exciting read (such a good writer, that Muñoz!), is justly famous for its accessible and flexible theoretical approach to subjectivity.

I did some reading on the other two lists while I was in Virginia over the last two weeks, but there is more to say about that reading, and so I will postpone that blog for another day.