A young director's examination how gender is performed on stage especially within the works of William Shakespeare

17 November 2012

A busy bee

So, it has been a while since my last post as life has become very busy!

The Gender MA is brilliant. I have found myself with a group of enthusiastic, intelligent and lovely people, who are as happy to talk about Foucault and Judith Butler as they are to go to dinner and find great theatre. The atmosphere at Goldmiths is fantastic and the commitment to academic excellence, coupled with a desire to see the theory put into practice, has meant that I feel very at home. I'm sorry I only have a year there!

Now essay season has begun I am furiously researching and writing. One essay will be on Walter Benjamin and his concept of the decay of 'aura'; the other will be about the pregnant body in art. Both very challenging but I'm excited to get back into writing.

I've also begun writing for a few online blogs, 'Being Feminist' and 'Geeked Magazine', the latter of which is soon to be in print which is very exciting!

But where is Shakespeare in all of this?! Well, it has been tricky to do much reading, or even thinking, about the old Bard recently, but that doesn't worry me too much as I know these things come and go.  Somewhere in the back of my mind I'm sure ideas about the plays are swirling and marinading. 

The thesis will feature Shakespeare in some way, I have no doubt of it. Currently, my thinking is towards looking at bodies on stage, with particular regard to women playing men. I would like to do a historical analysis, looking at cross-dressing on stage, or focus specifically on the plays and examine Shakespeare's approach to gender. However, time and word limit (20,000) will not permit such broad scope, and so I am going to have to pick a topic, and stick to it. Women on stage seems to allow for the covering of quite a lot of ground, and I also hope it will give me a chance to celebrate the triumphs and achievements of women on stage in the UK.

The all-female Julius Caesar, opening at the Donmar in a few days interests me greatly. I think I may start there and see what reflections arise...

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