This collection explores the consequences of accentism—an under-researched issue that intersects with racism and classism—in the Shakespeare industry across languages and cultures, past and present. It adopts a transmedia and transhistorical approach to a subject that has been dominated by the study of "Original Pronunciation." Yet the OP project avoids linguistically "foreign" characters such as Othello because of the additional complications their "aberrant" speech poses to the reconstruction process. It also evades discussion of contemporary, global practices and, underpinning the enterprise, is the search for an aural "purity" that arguably never existed. By contrast, this collection attends to foreign speech patterns in both the early modern and post-modern periods, including Indian, East Asian, and South African, and explores how accents operate as "metasigns" reinforcing ethno-racial stereotypes and social hierarchies. It embraces new methodologies, which includes reorienting attention away from the visual and onto the aural dimensions of performance.
Table of Contents
Introduction: "The Accent of his Tongue Affecteth him." Adele Lee
Chapter One: "Accents yet unknown:" In Search of Shakespeare’s Foreign Accents. Ema Vyroubalová
Chapter Two: "The stranger’s case:" Accenting Shakespeare’s "ESL Characters." Matthew Davies
Chapter Three: All One Mutual Cry: The Myth of Standard Accents in Shakespearean Performance. Ronan Paterson
Chapter Four: How Should Shakespeare Sound? Actors and the Journey from OP to RP. Alec Paterson
Chapter Five: Accentism, Anglocentrism, and Multilingualism in South African Shakespeares. Christopher Thurman
Chapter Six: "What doth your speech import?" The Implication of Accents in Indian Shakespeares. Koel Chatterjee
Chapter Seven: "What country, friends, is this?" The Indian Accent vs. Received Pronunciation in Productions of Twelfth Night. Taarini Mookherjee
Chapter Eight: "Rackers of Orthography"? Speaking Shakespeare in "Engrish." Adele Lee
Chapter Nine: Alien Accents: Signifying the Shakespearean Other in Audio Performances. Douglas M. Lanier
Afterword: Carla Della Gatta
Adele Lee is Associate Professor of early modern literature at Emerson College, USA. She specializes in Renaissance travel writing and "global Shakespeare" and is the author of The English Renaissance and the Far East: Cross-Cultural Encounters (2017).