Falstaff: Give Me Life

ᥪ Free Format Kindle [ Falstaff: Give Me Life ] ᦎ Kindle Ebook Author Harold Bloom ᦼ ᥪ Free Format Kindle [ Falstaff: Give Me Life ] ᦎ Kindle Ebook Author Harold Bloom ᦼ Falstaff CHAPTER 1 Prelude I fell in love with Sir John Falstaff when I was a boy of twelve, almost seventy five years ago A rather plump and melancholy youth, I turned to him out of need, because I was lonely Finding myself in him liberated me from a debilitating self consciousness He has never abandoned me for three quarters of a century and I trust will be with me until the end The true and perfect image of life abides with him robustly, unforgettably, forever He exposes what is counterfeit in me and in all others If Socrates had been born in Geoffrey Chaucers England and had gone to Eastcheap, a London street, to purchase meat, he might have stopped for ale or sack at the Boars Head Tavern There he would have encountered Falstaff and traded wit and wisdom with him I have not the skill to portray that imaginary meeting Only a fusion of Aristophanes and Samuel Beckett could manage it Decades ago, sharing Fundador with Anthony Burgess on a Manhattan evening in 1972, I suggested he would be able to venture on the task but he demurred A lifelong Falstaffian at eighty six, I have come to believe that if we are to represent Shakespeare by only one play, it ought to be the complete Henry IV, to which I would add Mistress Quicklys description of the death of Falstaff in act 2, scene 3 of Henry V I think of this as the Falstaffiad rather than the Henriad, as scholars tend to call it Shakespeare never surpassed the alternation between the royal court, the rebels, and Eastcheap in these three plays The transitions between high and low are so deft they seem invisible Is there in all Western literature a portrayal of ambivalence to match Hal Henry V In regard to both the King, his father, and to Hotspur, his rival, the Prince is a whirligig of contraries Toward Falstaff his long gathering ambivalence has turned murderous Hals imagination is haunted by the wishful image of Sir John Falstaff on the gallows The wretched Bardolph is hanged by his new King and former companion, in Henry V, without regret Had Falstaff not departed for Arthurs bosom, Mistress Quicklys poignant mistake for Abrahams bosom, he would have dangled by Bardolphs side More than a few scholars of Shakespeare share Hals ambivalence toward Falstaff This no longer surprises me They are the undead and Falstaff is the everliving I wonder that the greatest wit in literature should be chastised for his vices since all of them are perfectly open and cheerfully self acknowledged Supreme wit is one of the highest cognitive powers Falstaff is as intelligent as Hamlet But Hamlet is deaths ambassador while Falstaff is the embassy of life The heroic vitalists in literature include Rabelais Panurge, Chaucers Wife of Bath, and Cervantes Sancho Panza Falstaff reigns over them John Ruskin taught that the only wealth is life Sir John Falstaff, the Socrates of Eastcheap, embodies that truth What is the essence of Falstaffianism My late friend and drinking companion Anthony Burgess told me it was freedom from the state Anthony and I never quite agreed on that though indeed no societal standards ever could abide Falstaff I recall telling Burgess that for me the essence of Falstaffianism was do not moralize Computing Falstaffs flaws is trivial he bulges with them Hal, like his father Bolingbroke, is the essence of hypocrisy They are Machiavels Bolingbroke, who becomes Henry IV, is a usurper and a regicide His nonsensical obsession is that he will expiate the murder of Richard II by leading yet another crusade to capture Jerusalem He dies indeed in the chamber of his palace called Jerusalem Hal, when he becomes Henry V, leads a land grab to capture France A crusade is what one might expect of Prince Hal, who hungers like Hotspur for what both call honor Falstaff destroys the validity of that appetite in a reply to Hal in act 5, scene 1 in the first part of Henry IV Hal Why, thou owest God a death Exit Falstaff Tis not due yet I would be loath to pay him before his day What need I be so forward with him that calls not on me Well, tis no matter honour pricks me on Yea, but how if honour prick me off when I come on how then Can honour set to a leg No or an arm no or take away the grief of a wound no Honour hath no skill in surgery, then no What is honour a word What is in that word honour what is that honour air A trim reckoning Who hath it he that died o Wednesday Doth he feel it no Doth he hear it no Tis insensible, then Yea, to the dead But will it not live with the living no Why detraction will not suffer it Therefore Ill none of it Honour is a mere scutcheon and so ends my catechism act 5, scene 1, lines 12640 If there could be a religion of vitalism this would do very well for its catechism Falstaff mocks faith, killing the insane notion that we owe God our death Knowingly he also mocks both Hal and himself Disreputable and joyous, he speaks to a world that goes from violence to violence Falstaff immediately became the most popular of all Shakespearean personalities, and remains so The audiences at the Globe and the readers who purchased quartos found little to moralize against in Sir John His being overflows and that excess brings new meanings to our minds Exuberance in itself is a shadowy virtue and can be dangerous to the self and to others, but in Falstaff it generates life I am weary of being accused of sentimentalizing Falstaff I once told a benign interviewer Remember, there are three great poets whom neither you nor I would want to have lunch or dinner with, or even a drinkFranois Villon, Christopher Marlowe, and Arthur Rimbaud At the least they would rob us, at the most they might kill us Sir John Falstaff wouldnt kill us, but he would certainly gull us one way or another, and perhaps pick our pockets very adeptly In that sense the sublime Falstaff is bad news Against myself I cite Orson Welles, whose Chimes at Midnight remains a neglected masterpiece Welles made the film, an adaptation of the Henriad, and played it as tragedy The film had a supporting cast of brilliant stars including Keith Baxter as Hal, John Gielgud as Henry IV, Jeanne Moreau as Doll Tearsheet, Margaret Rutherford as Mistress Quickly, and Ralph Richardson as the Narrator Welles called Falstaff a gloriously life affirming good man defending a forcethe old Englandwhich is going down What is difficult about Falstaff is that he is the greatest conception of a good man, the most completely good man, in all drama His faults are so small and he makes tremendous jokes out of little faults But his goodness is like bread, like wine I may be unique in my total agreement with Orson Welles Is there anyone else in Henry IV whose goodness is like bread, like wine They are scurvy politicians like the King and the brilliant Prince Hal and most of the rebels They are smug thugs like Prince John and high spirited killing machines like the captivating Hotspur and Douglas Falstaffs followersBardolph, Nym, the outrageous Pistolare entertaining rogues, and Mistress Quickly and Doll Tearsheet are better company than the Lord Chief Justice Justice Shallow is charmingly absurd and his crony Silence augments the irreality Falstaff is as bewildering as Hamlet, as infinitely varied as Cleopatra He can be apprehended but never fully comprehended There is no end to Falstaff His matrix is freedom but he dies for love Oliver Goldsmith in his A Reverie at the Boars Head Tavern, Eastcheap is a beacon The character of old Falstaff, even with all his faults, gives me consolation than the most studied efforts of wisdom I here behold an agreeable old fellow, forgetting age, and showing me the way to be young at sixty five Sure I am well able to be as merry, though not so comical as he Is it not in my power to have, though not so much wit, at least as much vivacity Age, care, wisdom, reflection, begone I give you to the winds Lets have tother bottle heres to the memory of Shakespeare, Falstaff, and all the merry men of Eastcheap Falstaff is possibly closer to seventy five than sixty five Dr Samuel Johnson, who discovered and fostered Goldsmith, similarly celebrated Falstaff while expressing moral disapproval Maurice Morgann is the true ancestor of all Falstaffians His An Essay on the Dramatic Character of Sir John Falstaff, published in 1777, was criticized by Johnson, who facetiously suggested Morgann should next try to prove Iago a good man The issue was the supposed cowardice of the Fat Knight It is an accusation first made by Prince Hal, who fiercely needs to persuade Falstaff to confess his cowardice Why Crossing the threshold to the sinuous consciousness of Hal Henry V, second King of the Lancaster line, we confront the wavering presence of ontology itself, the immanence of Sir John Falstaff Why did Shakespeare invent Falstaff Literary character is always an invention and indebted to prior inventions Shakespeare invented literary character as we know it He reformed our expectations for the verbal imitation of personality and the reformation appears to be permanent and uncannily inevitable The Bible and Homer powerfully render personages yet their characters are mostly unchanging They age and die within their stories but their modes of being do not develop Shakespeares personalities do The representation of character in his plays now seems normative and indeed became the accepted mode almost immediately Shakespeares personalities have little in common with those of Ben Jonson or Christopher Marlowe Shakespeares originality in portraying women and men founds itself upon The Canterbury Tales of Geoffrey Chaucer Throughout Shakespeare, vitality transmutes into doom eagerness Richard II, the protagonist of the history that begins the Henriad, is a moral masochist whose luxurious self indulgence in despair augments his overthrow by the usurper Bolingbroke, who thus becomes Henry IV In the personality of Richard II, Shakespeare prefigures that element in all of us by which we render bad situations even worse through our own hyperbolic language Falstaff is different His zest for life pervades his torrent of language and laughter Hotspur is the incarnation of doom eagerness His mode though is opposite to that of Richard II His vaunting language assaults the frontiers of what is possible Hal, his fathers son, distrusts his own vitalism, and yet goes to Falstaff to be confirmed in it The royal pupil proves unforgiving toward his teacher Kings have no friends, only followers, and Sir John Falstaff is no mans follower Directors, actors, playgoers, readers need to understand that Falstaff, most magnificent of wits, is tragicomic Unlike Hotspur and Hal, he is not one of the fools of time Dr Johnson said that love was the wisdom of fools, and the folly of the wise I cannot think of a better description of my hero Sir John Falstaff.Praise for Falstaff Give me Life Famed literary critic and Yale professor Bloom showcases his favorite Shakespearian character in this poignant work Hehas created a larger than life portrait of a character who is at his best a giant image of human freedom Publishers WeeklyIn this first of five books about Shakespearean personalities, Bloom brings erudition and boundless enthusiasm Kirkus Reviews, starred review Blooms last love letter to the shaping spirit of his imagination An explanation and reiteration of why Falstaff matters to Bloom, and why Falstaff is one of literatures vital forces A pleasure to read.Jeanette Winterson, New York Times Book ReviewPraise for Hamlet Poem Unlimited To read this book is to hear a powerful call to fall in love again with Shakespeare and his plays I can think of no engaging and nourishing pair of literary works a drama of towering, perhaps unmatched, genius joining an exquisite work of literary criticism by a scholar of genuine greatness Balti SunA deeply felt reverie on Hamlet,a latter day example of the genial impressionist criticism practiced by Walter Pater, John Ruskin, and Oscar Wilde Washington Post Book WorldBrilliant Will give you a night of full joy and make you forget current events NewsdayPraise for Shakespeare The Invention of the Human Not perhaps since Samuel Johnson in the mid eighteenth century has a critic explained to a general audience as ably as Mr Bloom does how much Shakespeare matters to our sense of who we are The New York TimesShould this be the one book you read if youre going to read a book about Shakespeare Yes New York ObserverEnraptured, incantatory You could hardly ask for a capacious, beneficent work The New Yorker Falstaff Wikipedia Sir John Falstaff is a fictional character who mentioned in four plays by William Shakespeare and appears on stage three of them His significance as fully opera Italian pronunciation comic acts the composer Giuseppe Verdi The libretto was adapted Arrigo Boito from s JohnHartness Are you missing any chapters Click Raptor tag at bottom post to get all Except there wasn t fight go back When trio reached Verdi Herbert von Karajan Check out Music Stream ad free or purchase CD MPs now EKMars Placeholder eventkeeper In addition scrolling through events this page, can click specific dates calendar upper right corner quickly jump days Life Estates Minutes MasonLaw, PC NC Bob read article I am puzzled that life estate not countable asset Back my grandmother time wanted give her son dad The Little Orchestra relaxed classical concerts in London based orchestra creates fun, intimate nights Join us one our hear wonderful pieces played Avery Hill Bedtime Stories Prose George George Lewis Avery original bedtime stories prose Facts About Plays Mental died years ago month, April , complete works least surviving including several collaborations QQ qq sowing, growing arranging flowers cut flower grower writer, Jane WrigglesworthHow Read Why Harold Bloom How Bloom FREE shipping qualifying offers Information endlessly available where shall wisdom be found Harold New York, luglio un critico letterario statunitense, divenuto una figura nota al grande pubblico negli anni Novanta, quando pubblic la Shakespeare Invention Human Harold indispensable critic writer American literary author Bloom, known for his innovative interpretations history creation literature Paris Review Art Criticism Recently, has been under attack just scholarly journals colloquia, but also newspapers, op ed television Western Canon list Great Books Creates Massive List Works have little desire rehash politics, facts are plain arrived college an undergraduate English major mid Bloom Define Dictionary definition, plant See School Primary Glasthule, Glasthule sees primary education extension home Dublin South Co David Early personal David born Edina, Minnesota, Laura Jean ne Carmichael James He avid ice hockey player Falstaff: Give Me Life

    • Format Kindle
    • 1501164139
    • Falstaff: Give Me Life
    • Harold Bloom
    • Anglais
    • 20 May 2016

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