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西洋文化の中のドラマを履修したときのウィークリー・レクチャー・ジャーナルのLog5と6で内容はElizabethan World Pictureです。

Journal Log #5 and #6HEA

Log #5 for Week 5, February 4-8

Elizabethan World Picture (By Task Force Group):
Task-Force group #2 did a great job on the presentation regarding the Elizabethan World Picture.  This topic involves broad-based knowledge in political, social and cultural contexts of the time.  However, the members in the group succeeded in presenting their points in a very thorough and well-outlined manner.

It is evident that the excellent choice of DWC textbook, Age of Shakespeare, directly accounted for this TFG’s success in their presentation.  This textbook provided a basic yardstick to understand the world view of the Elizabethan and Jacobean era.  The textbook is very easy to read, which extremely enhanced my understanding in this topic.

Tawny addressed one of the foremost Elizabethan concepts, the Great Chain of Being.  This chain extends from God’s foot to small creatures, such as insect.  This Theo-centric religious view can explain what human beings were considered in the Elizabethan era.

The concept of order is essential for understanding religious and philosophical beliefs of the Elizabethan world.  People highly trusted on the value of order.  The order of Cosmo consists of two components: macrocosm and microcosm.  People of the time actually believed stars can affect on human.  The structure of universe is very much alike, comparing to the inside of human; in other words, microcosm is a counterpart of macrocosm.

Aleah’s focus was to give us a clear image of Queen Elizabeth I.  I was very pleased to learn various facts that can illustrate what this queen was like.  The description included the following facts:  Elizabeth 1) spoke six languages, 2) kept her virginity to avoid danger of childbirth, 3) liked pageant and singing, 4) was raised in both aspects of Protestant and Catholic, and more.  Especially, the last one was significant because it explained one of the reasons why Elizabeth took a middle ground policy in religious conflict.  Elizabeth I was not interested in religious sects, such as Reformers and Catholic.  Her middle ground policy illuminated chaos.  The transparency of Elizabeth executed Aleah’s presentation.

Elissa’s topic is related to the life among people in London at the end of sixteen century.  When she mentioned dowry and jointure in the section of marriage, Professor Luciano offered a clarification.  The professor’s explanation did clarify the aspects of marriage in the sixteenth and seventeenth century.  Marriage custom was very much like business contract, so there were a couple of significant money transactions.  Dowry is the money that designates the father of bride who is expected to provide the man his daughter marries.  Jointure is the money provided by the husband to support his wife in the event that he dies before her.

Professor Luciano’s explanation reminded me of what I learned through watching a production, Taming of Shrew, at Oregon Shakespeare Festival last year.  In the play, Catherine’s father, Baptista, gave dowry to Patriquio, and Patriquio offered jointure for Catherine.

Glenn talked about the international power balance of the time.  England was surrounded by powerful enemies, such as Spain, Ireland, France, and more.  They were always worried about being invaded, so they built navy.  Later on, this English fleet won the battle in Spanish Armada.  Glenn’s handwritten illustration was not only lovely but also very effective in understanding the power balance in Europe of the time.

Finally, Sharon did her job.  It was very unfortunate that the group ran out the time for her.  She described what James I was like, but it was impossible for her to give us enough information in a couple of minutes.  I wish I had the handout that tells about this king, so we could study individually.  Her presentation was incomplete.

In all, the members in the TFG #2 set a good standard for this assignment.   All topics they presented for us were well-researched in advance.  The group members kept their fellow theatre students interested by using transparencies and handouts.  I appreciated their efforts that made a great contribution for the DWC class.           
    

Log #6 for Week 6, February 11-15

Elizabethan World Picture (By Professor Luciano):
Today’s lecture did broaden my horizons in terms of understanding the Elizabethan world.  The contents of the lecture tied together with what DWC students learned from the presentation last week.  Professor Luciano used a number of transparencies, handouts, and slides to describe how the Elizabethan people of the time viewed the world.

The first topic we discussed was one of the most significant Elizabethan concepts, the Great Chain of Being.  The handout contained a vivid illustration and was really helpful for constructing a clear image of how the great chain extends from God’s foot to inanimate objects.  There was an interesting hierarchy existing in the diagram of this great chain.  It is very fascinating that dolphin was considered supreme among fish.

Next, Professor Luciano showed us a picture of Queen Elizabeth I sitting her throne.  Her right hand is on the sphere, which is a clear indication of Elizabeth I, being the ruler of the world.  This also signifies divine right of queen/king.  The throne is divinely appointed; therefore, queen is almost considered as much as God.  This is one of the fundamental theories of absolute monarch.

Professor Luciano emphasized the importance of order by referring to the ending scene from Hamlet.  Fortinbra (forte abrazo for strong arm) reestablishes order after the bloody feud in the royal family in Denmark.  Fortinbra is a figure of someone who is in control.  This reference did follow up on the point that Professor Smith made in his speech of Measure for Measure.

The planets and stars are essential components of “the total integration of man, Nature, and God.”  Elizabethan people were mentally influenced by stars.  Professor Luciano gave us a reference from Romeo and Juliet.  The professor’s reference explains the relationship between men and stars.  A false message results Romeo’s fatal misunderstanding.  Romeo is in shock and the first thing comes up his mouth is, “I defy you stars.”  This is a typical Elizabethan mindset of stars — that is, stars up in the sky can affect people.

Go to Log #7 and #8