Monday, August 27, 2012

ProfShakespeare 1, Dark Lady 0

So the news of the day is somebody claiming that "Black Luce" mentioned in Henslowe's diaries must have been Shakespeare's "Dark Lady".  The problem with these stories is that people who don't follow Shakespeare will see it in the popular press and think, "Oh, interesting, well then I guess that's an answer to that question."  Meanwhile people with the slightest passing interest in researching Shakespeare will think, "Great, another unproveable theory - get in line."

I think this theory is amusing because I heard it not from that link but from Twitter user "ProfShakespeare", aka Grace Ioppolo, who I hope doesn't mind me citing her research since she did a much better job than I ever would.  She also happens to be Founder and Director of the Henslowe-Alleyn Digitisation Project, so why not get your information from somebody who deals with the original source material every day?

Professor Ioppolo is hosting a conference (I assume - she calls it "my conference") on the connections between Shakespeare and Henslowe in September:
Who invented Shakespearean theatre?Burbage & Shakespeare
Henslowe & Alleyn:
Who Invented the "Shakespearean Theatre"?
Saturday, 24th November 24th 2012, 10am-5pm
The University of Reading 

1 comment:

Sean O'Sullivan said...

The most convincing candidate for
The Dark Lady that I have read of
is still Emilia Lanier - put
forward by the Elizabethan
historian A.L.Rowse.I can heartily
recommend any of the many books
he wrote on Shakespeare and the
Elizabethan Age.

Here is a link to a hugely
charming, if slightly dated, TV
series on the life of Shakespeare
which gives its own spin on
who the Dark Lady was, as well as
many other biographical
dramatisations.The first episode
has a young Ian McShane as Marlowe,
with an equally young Tim Curry
as a hero-worshiping wannabe on
the lookout for how to break into the London theatre - literally, as it turns out.