Colloquy Session IX: Construction of Identity/Self

Ashley Pierce here with the 9th session of colloquies for the 2013 Blackfriars Conference on Thursday October 24th from 3:30 to 4:45 PM on the topic of “Construction of Identity/Self.” The presenters for this session are Katherine Schaap Williams, Richard Waugaman, and James Rizzi and chaired by Whitney Egbert.

Tis Somewhat Hard When Kings Must Go by James Rizzi

James RIzzi’s paper involved the relationship between Gaveston and King Edward in Marlowe’s play “Edward II”. He cites moments in the play;, such as the opening scene with Gaveston and Edward as well as between Gaveston and the Bishop of Coventry.  Rizzi discovers that Edward is defining and discovering himself through Gaveston, even though there are other characters throughout the play that he should or could use in this manner.He further states that the reason why this phenomena is happening in such a manner is because it is a non-imposed relationship. He spoke about the moment in which the two men exchange portraits, which is later revealed that Edward in the end of the play still has this portrait and seems to hold it in high regard.

Performing Ill by Katherine Schaap Williams

This paper deals with actors who are to portray sickness on the stage. While looking at Jonson’s play “Volpone” for example, She says that for this character the original idea of “sickness” is fake; mainly a means for the character to obtain gold and riches. Later in the play, during the first trial scene, Volpone’s body is used to show his sickness in an attempt to prove the truth behind his lies. Williams suggests that the real crisis in the play is not how the body looks but how in the scene following the trial his fake disease has started to become a reality. Volpone ultimately toubles the lines in the epilogue in particular, between reality, fake, character, actor, and play.

A Psychoanalytical Perspective on the Character of Coriolanus: The ‘Hen’ is MIghtier than the Sword by Richard Waugaman (Coriolanus-Blackfriars 2013)

Waugaman talks about how there are three psychoanalytical moments within Shakespeare’s “Coriolanus.” Though for this paper he speaks about the idea of how Coriolanus’s mother makes mention of “if I were Coriolanus’s wife…”, thus dealing with the Oedipal complex. Citing moments in act five when Coriolanus is confronted with his family as he plots to destroy Rome, Waugaman shows how this gives us sight into Coriolanus’s psyche and self created fantasies.He further says that Coriolanus’ mother has programmed her son in such a way that she knows how to manipulate and control him through his mind.  Moving to talk about how we much pause and take time to ponder what has happened to Coriolanus’s father and how that shapes the character in regards to Coriolanus’ back story.

One thought on “Colloquy Session IX: Construction of Identity/Self

  1. The Blackfriars Conference is always a hoot– I strongly recommend it.

    I just noticed that the text of my presentation is hyperlinked, if you click on the link to the right of my name.

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