"Speak again": The politics of rewriting in A 'Thousand Acres' (Jane Smiley)

Authors
Citation
D. Brauner, "Speak again": The politics of rewriting in A 'Thousand Acres' (Jane Smiley), MOD LANG R, 96, 2001, pp. 654-666
Citations number
23
Language
INGLESE
art.tipo
Article
Categorie Soggetti
Language & Linguistics
Journal title
MODERN LANGUAGE REVIEW
ISSN journal
0026-7937 → ACNP
Volume
96
Year of publication
2001
Part
3
Pages
654 - 666
Database
ISI
SICI code
0026-7937(200107)96:<654:"ATPOR>2.0.ZU;2-N
Abstract
This essay explores the uses to which Jane Smiley puts King Lear in her nov el "A Thousand Acres". Focusing on the domestic politics of play and novel, it argues that Smiley's rewriting partakes of a long-established tradition of revisioning Shakespeare, while at the same time being radically modern. Although the novel is clearly in part a feminist response to the marginali zation of Goneril and Regan in Shakespeare's play, and to their demonizatio n by male critics, it does not simply invert the patriarchal values of Lear , but, rather by transposing its stories across historical, geographical, g eneric, and gender boundaries, both exposes and exploits the play's moral a mbiguities.