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Spy. Poet. Playwright. Political commentator. Transatlantic traveller. Novelist. Advocate of sexual freedom. Woman of Wit. Sound like someone you'd like to meet? Unfortunately for us, the fabulous Ms. Aphra Behn died in 1689. But in tonight's episode of Supervixens, we'll take a leisurely ramble through her world of witty and wicked 17th century Supervixens: unconventional, unapologetic women, unafraid to speak their minds.
"Feminist Supervixens" of every sex and gender are invited  to participate in this feminists' circle.  Our goal is to build a vibrant community of feminists here on Daily Kos.  The emphasis here is on camaraderie and support, so if you're looking for an argument, we suggest that you go instead to room 12A, just along the corridor.Previous "episodes" in this diary series have been written by hrh, with guest-host diaries from mem from somerville, Elise, righteousbabe, and irishwitch. Some more guest-hosts are waiting in the wings. Feminists who are interested in being a guest-host can email hrh at:  feministsupervixens (AT) yahoo.com

An Unconventional Woman

Aphra Behn has been called the first professional English woman writer. By the time her first play was produced on the London stage in 1670, Behn was 30 years old and had already lived a life of adventure and intrigue.

Christened "Eaffrey Johnson," she was born the daughter of a barber-surgeon and a wet-nurse from Kent. Despite her common birth, young Aphra acquired a good grasp of reading and writing. In her 20s she traveled to Guiana (colonial Surinam) , where she witnessed firsthand the  plantation system and its use of slave labour.

Around this time, she married "Mr Behn" (pronounced variously Bean, Ben, or Bane), a Dutch merchant. Behn's biogapher Janet Todd notes that Behn always wrote negatively about both merchants and marriages conducted for financial reasons, suggesting that her own, brief marriage may have been unhappy; for whatever reason, he was out of her life by 1666.

Take back that Heart, which you with such Caution give/ Take the fond valu'd trifle back;/ I hate Love-merchants that a trade would drive;/ And meanly cunning Bargains make.—Aphra Behn, "To Lysander"

After returning to England in the mid 1660s, Behn had an audience with King Charles II and set out to win the hearts and minds of literary  London. She wrote a play and shopped it around fashionable circles, but before it was produced she was recruited to spy on the Dutch, under her code-name "Astrea." This adventure went badly, and she landed in debtor's prison because the crown neglected to pay her.

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She wrote to Thomas Killigrew, theatre impressario:"I will send my mother to the King with a Pitition...if I have not the money to night you must send me some thing to keepe me in Prison for I will not starve." (Quoted in Kissing the Rod, an Anthology of Seventeenth Century Women's Verse, 241)  

Probably with Killigrew's help, she managed to have her first play, The Forced Marriage produced anonymously. It was a smash hit, as was her next production.But her third play flopped, perhaps behcause the audience discovered her female identity:

I Here, and there, o'reheard a Coxscomb cry/ A Rott it—'tis a Womans Comedy/ One who because she lately chanc't to please us,/ With her Damn'd stuff, will never cease to teaze us...

It was unprecedented for a woman to write commercially in the 1670s, or at least to do so openly.  But Behn persevered, and succeeded. How did she get away with it? The answer requires a short side-trip...

A Nation of Change and Novelty

A brave world, sir, full of religion, knavery, and change: we shall shortly see better days. --Aphra Behn, The Roundheads (1682)
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England in the 1660s and 1670s was a world of infinite possibility, a society in the midst of re-inventing itself  after years of insurgency Civil Wars.  Consider this: In 1641, a Puritan-led elite rebelled against King Charles 1st (Chuck 2's father); in 1649, that same Charles the First, who claimed a "divine right" to rule, was executed by his own people.

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For 11 years England experimented with republicanism, having no king at all, but rather a dictator "Lord Protector," one General Oliver Cromwell.

Cromwell's supporters could say that "Freedom was on the March" all they wanted, but the republican experiment was a disaster. By 1660, powerful elites actually re-invited the monarchy into England. (Yeah, you got that right: Englishmen rebelled against a king, killed him, did without one...and then tried to pretend the whole thing never happened as if it were some long and regrettably boozy weekend.)

So in the 1660s and 1670s,  no-one could quite agree on the proper order of society, political, authority, and the like. As political philosophers struggled to explain what the hell was gong on, English men and women tested social boundaries. And how.

The Merry Monarch Tall, dark, and handsome in a dissolute fashion, Charles II brought with him a sophistication born of years living on the Continent. He loved little spaniels. He loved pretty, witty women. But mostly, he loved not getting his head chopped off. This made him a very pragmatic man, and one who enjoyed life as much as he could.

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He cultivated a court that attracted some of the finest scientific, literary and artistic minds of his day; it was also a court that rejected much of conventional morality and manners. Charles himself lived openly with his many mistresses (and his long-suffering wife, Catherine of Braganza).

Although he cultivated royal spectacle, he could also be incredibly informal, taking daily walks with his spaniels and often stopping to chat with commoner and courtier alike.  In the circles of this enigmatic monarch, there grew up a peculiar political and social  philosophy called libertinism, which Aphra Behn seems to have embraced wholeheartedly.

I will not purchase slavery/ At such a dangerous rate/ But glory at my liberty/ And laugh at love and fate/ –Aphra Behn, The Forc'd Marriage

Livin' La Vida...Libertine

"Libertinism" shares its root "liber" with both "libertarianism" and "liberalism," giving us a clue that it was about freedom. The men and women who embraced it rejected old social and political norms regarding sexuality, social relations, and sometimes even politics.

Some embraced elitism; other argued for social equality, dismissing class as an artificial and useless restriction. Many viewed libertinism as a sort of "don't trust anyone over 30" youth movement; only the young–those who can truly live life to its fullest, with all its vim and vigor–should have any real say in society.

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Behn's own libertinism:

--rejected conventional marriage and sexual double standards.  (In Behn's play The Lucky Chance, her heroine ends the play with her lover, leaving her greedy husband for good. In an era where divorce was effectively impossible, such protests promoted women's rights to choose their own partners.)

--rejected commercialism and mercantilism. (Merchants are her favourite villains and the frequent butt of her jokes.)

--rejected at least some forms of racial discrimination. (In Behn's novel Oroonoko she celebrated a noble African prince who led a slave revolt in Surinam.)

Behn expressed her libertine opinions (and got paid to do so!) primarily by writing for the  bawdy, rowdy theatres of Restoration London.

Staging Success

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Now, when I say "theatre," please don't think THEA-TUH. Restoration theatres were anything but decorous and dull. They were noisy places where actors competed for the attention of the crowd as best they could; audience members were often more interested in catching the eye of other theatre-goers than in watching the show.

 Or they might be more interested in flirting with the orange-sellers (sucking on oranges helped diminish the almost universal problem of bad breath—things could get pretty stinky in a crowded theatre). The audience fairly consistently talked back to the actors; they might begin singing songs of their own, or pelt the actors with fruits and vegetables, or, occasionally, riot. Prostitutes worked the crowd, their faces covered with masks. (Well-born women also wore masks to the theatre sometimes, to disguise themselves, making for some highly awkward social situations!)

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In such an atmosphere,  plays with spectacle, farce, and sex could most easily catch and hold the audience's attention. Aphra excelled at all three.

It didn't hurt that her plays made outstanding use of that new restoration invention: the actress, introduced to English theatre in the 1660s. (If you've seen Shakespeare in Love, then you know that boys played women's roles in the English theatre before that point.)

Being an actress was no easy chore. Typically paid less than male actors, they coped with suspicions that as "public women" they were little more than prostitutes. Curious theatre-goers could watch them dress in the "tiring rooms" and many an actress accepted the advances of a powerful lover who could protect her; it was easier (and more profitable) than  facing the hassle of defending her already-suspect virtue.

Elizabeth Barry, Actress Extraordinaire

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A few actresses managed to rise above the challenges and emerge as truly formidable professionals. Of these, Elizabeth Barry enjoyed a most lasting partnership with Aphra Behn.

Barry came to the stage as a young actress in the mid 1670s, just as Behn was hitting her stride as a writer. Authors had considerable hands in rehearsing and casting productions of their works, and Barry first succeeded with Behn's notable tragedy Abdeleazar. Their next collaborative effort came with Behn's signature comedy, The Rover.

The Rover is a funny tale of penniless English Cavaliers wandering through the Mediterranean, where they encounter a fabulous Mardi Gras Festival. The title character was the most rollicking rake of them all, an English captain named Wilmore, loosely based on the famous Restoration libertine and sometime colleague of Behn's John Wilmot, the Earl of Rochester (you may have seenJohnny Depp's take on him.)

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Elizabeth Barry (sometime real-life lover of Wilmot's) starred as Hellena, a sassy young woman who refuses to go along with her family's plan that she become a nun. Disguised first as a gypsy and then as man, she woos the rakish Wilmore instead, pursuing him on her own terms and finally managing to win him over as much by her wit and intelligence as her physical charm.

Barry, famed for her ability to project true passion, also starred in Behn's sequel to The Rover, again playing an outspoken and unconventional woman: La Nuche. In the play's final moments, La Nuche dispenses with the bonds of marriage altogether, preferring to live freely with her lover.

As love is the most noble and divine passion

of the soul, so is it that to which we may justly

attribute all the real satisfactions of life...

Aphra Behn, The Fair Jilt (1688)

It was a fitting role for Barry, who also eschewed marriage; she preferred the jeers of those who disapproved of her extramarital affairs (and the two children she bore as a single mother) to being under the control of a husband. She achieved remarkable artistic and financial success, becoming one of the most highly paid actors–male or female–on the London stage in the 1690s, and founding her own company with two other actors.

Nell Gwynn, Charlie's Angel (and Aphra's too)

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Unlike her male colleagues, Aphra Behn could not hope to turn her talents into a government post or sinecure, but she did enjoy special patronage from the King's circle of courtiers, including at least two of his mistresses.

"Pretty witty" Nell Gwynn is supposed to have been the daughter of a procuress; she entered the theatre as an orange-seller and ended up on stage. Famed for her tremendous comic gifts, she was an audience favorite and enjoyed the favours of many wealthy men. Samuel Pepys, the Restoration diarist and theatre addict, wrote of her:

...so great performance of a comical part was never, I believe, in the world before as Nell do this, both as a mad girl, then most and best of all when she comes in like a young gallant; and hath the notions and carriage of a spark the most that ever I saw any man have. It makes me, I confess, admire her.

I've never understood why some people have the idea that Gwynn was a bimbo. In her day, she was most celebrated for her ready wit.  Stories of her self-deprecating humor are especially numerous.

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Finding her carriageman fighting with another servant because the latter had called Gwynn a whore, she is supposed to have remarked: "I am a whore. Find something else to fight about."

Unlike most of Charles' other mistresses, Gwynn was rather popular with ordinary Englishmen and women; she was a sort of "pin-up" girl and an engraving of her posed as Cupid sold briskly in London. (Pepys owned one; it's pictured above.)

At court, Gwynn gathered a circle of unconventional wits and poets,  and became a highly influential arbiter of taste. (Not bad for an orange girl!) Her patronage was priceless– a good thing for Behn, who enjoyed her friendship and favour.

Hortense Mancini, Cross-dresser, Abuse Survivor...and Swordswoman

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Another of Behn's patrons (and yet another of Charles II's witty mistresses) was the fabulous Hortense Mancini. Neice of the powerful Cardinal Mazarin of France, she had entered an unhappy marriage at the age of 15. In the words of Stephen Coote, author of Royal Survivor:

Her new husband forbade Hortense company, English company especially. He insisted that she spend the greater part of her time at prayer. He refused to allow her to eat in front of men. He searched their bedroom for evil spirits. Having failed to find them, he set out to reform the world. He told Louis XIV that he was an emissary from the angel Gabriel come to tell him to sever relations with his mistress. The King blandly informed him that the angel Gabriel had already told him that the Duc himself was mad....

After Hortense's husband attempted to put her  in a  convent, she escaped. Traveling dressed as a man, she eventually reached England where, in 1676, she published her memoirs and gained tremendous sympathy for her case. She continued to dress in men's garb and was known for her skill with firearms and at swordplay–and for her ongoing love affair with Charles II.

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That Behn was not at all bothered by Mancini's unconventional sexuality is hardly surprising. Behn had a long-running love affair with bisexual lawyer John Hoyle. She also wrote at least one poem suggesting a sexual relationship with another woman, perhaps a  transgendered person:



Fair lovely Maid, or if that Title be

Too weak, too Feminine for Nobler thee,

Permit a Name that more Approaches Truth:

And let me call thee, Lovely Charming Youth...

...In pity to our Sex sure thou wer't sent,

That we might Love, and yet be Innocent:

For sure no Crime with thee we can commit;

Or if we should--thy Form excuses it.

For who, that gathers fairest Flowers believes

A Snake lies hid beneath the Fragrant Leaves...

----Aphra Behn, To the Fair Clarinda, Who Made Love to Me, Imagined More than Woman

Mary Astell:"If All Men are Born equal, Why are All Women Born Slaves?"

Mancini's case attracted the attention of another outspoken 17th Century Supervixen, Mary Astrell, sometimes hailed as England's first feminist theorist.

Mary Astell was deeply concerned with women's education; as women were shut out of all opportunities for higher education in England, she proposed a sort of Protestant convent for young ladies as a way of improving their sex; further, she urged women to devote themselves to enlightenment principle of logic and reason in governing their lives.

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In 1700, Astell published Some Considerations upon Marriage, which used the unhappy case of Hortense Mancini to argue that the marriage market, generally speaking, was not such a great deal for women; it was all too easy to end up, like Mancini, with a husband who might be abusive and financially wasteful.

Maybe that's why Astell herself never married, preferring to spend her time working at founding a girls' school and engaging in a long-running political and religious debate with Daniel Defoe and the Earl of Shaftesbury.

A Forced Semi-Retirement

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But back to Aphra. In 1681, she found herself in some political hot water for writing a play epilogue that was critical of the Duke of Monmouth, Charles II's popular (but illegitimate) son. For the next few years she turned her attentions primarily to off-stage writing; not as lucrative, but less likely to land one in political hot water.

All I ask, is the privilege for my masculine part, the poet in me.... If I must not, because of my sex, have this freedom ... I lay down my quill and you shall hear no more of me.

--- Aphra Behn, preface to The Lucky Chance (1686)

Behn received considerable support from most of her male colleagues, who accepted her as one of their own and even helped her find work in many cases. A few (like Shadwell and the execrable Robert Gould) spurned her efforts as unworthy and she herself as a "punk"(that's 17th century language for a prostitute).

 In general, though, they readily treated her as an equal, and she had many "brothers of the Pen," with whom she shared food, wine, and many a sociable evening.( She was known as a sparkling conversationalist, fond of her liquor and talented at playing the flute.) Her friends also helped her  make money by publishing translations.

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Translations were lucrative; Behn specialized in  translating works from French. But Behn was crippled by her lack of  Greek or Latin, almost exclusively male preserves. Here some of her male colleagues (such as Thomas Creech, who translated Lucretius)  helped her by providing rough translations that she paraphrased into good verse.

In one of these elegant works (on the topic of trees) she broke off and spoke briefly  in her own voice. Noting that the laurel tree had long been used as a crown for conquerors, she wrote:

Let me with Sappho and Orinda be

Oh ever sacred Nymph, adorn'd by thee;

And give my Verses Immortality

It was still not enough money.  Behn tackled  new territory: prose stories and  novels. Her book Love-Letters between a Nobleman and his Sister (download it for free here) chronicled the scandalous real-life romance of Ford, Lord Grey, with his sister-in-law. (It didn't hurt that Grey was on the opposite side of the political fence from Behn.)

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The book was a fictionalized (and highly erotic) novel that imagined scandalous letters between the two. (Think the Foley IMs, only actually sexy instead of just kinda pervy.)  It sold well, but Behn's novel Oroonoko gave her even more lasting fame, serving as the basis for several popular 18th century plays, and selling well in French and German translations as well as in England.  Her short stories ranged from dramatic tales of unhappy women in convents to bawdy romps through a Christmas tide celebration. Several of these stories also served as the basis for other playwright's works.

The "Pox of Poverty"

Pox of Poverty, it makes a Man a Slave, makes Wit and Honour sneak, my Soul grow lean and rusty for want of Credit.–Aphra Behn, The Rover (1677)
                       

Although Behn enjoyed literary and theatrical successes in the late 1680s, her health was poor and her finances were worse. In April of 1689, Behn's medical problems overcame her and she passed away. Political discontent may have worsened her depression as well.  The so-called "Glorious" Revolution of 1688 was not so glorious for Behn, who seems to have seen in it only the triumph of the Whig mercantile interests she so despised.

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Behn was buried in Westminster Abbey, not in the famed Poet's corner, alas! She lies in a quiet corner of the choir, with these words inscribed on her grave: "Thus lies proof that wit can never be/ Defense Enough against mortality"

Mortality of the body, perhaps. But there's good news for all you unconventional women out there. Aphra's literary reputation, tarnished as "pornographic" by the Victorians, was resurrected in the 20th century. Today her works are enjoying a renaissance, as college drama and  literature students rediscover this wickedly witty woman. Let's give Virginia Woolf the last word on her lasting legacy:

All women together ought to let flowers fall upon the tomb of Aphra Behn, which is, most scandalously but rather appropriately, in Westminster Abbey, for it was she who earned them the right to speak their minds. It is she—shady and amorous as she was.—who makes it not quite fantastic for me to say to you to–night: Earn five hundred a year by your wits.—Virginia Woolf, A Room of One's Own


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Who's your favorite woman of wit?
What's on your mind?

Originally posted to aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 05:41 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  rum jar (29+ / 0-)

    In honor of Mistress Behn (who is supposed to have introduced milk punch--a rummy drink), this night's tip jar is brought to you full of your favourite libration!

    P.S. Sorry for the roughness---my browser crashed during posting and I had to -re edit. :(

    "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

    by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 05:43:04 PM PDT

  •  Share your own favourite witty women! (8+ / 0-)

    Dorothy Parker has always been a favourite of mine..

    "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

    by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 05:45:00 PM PDT

    •  What's your favorite Dorothy Parker quote? (7+ / 0-)

      "In the beginning the universe was created. This has been widely criticized and generally regarded as a bad move." -- Douglas Adams

      by LithiumCola on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 05:48:55 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Mary Wollstonecraft (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tryptamine, hrh, aphra behn

      addressed the subject of wit, iirc:

      Some celebrated writers have supposed that wit and judgment were incompatible; opposite qualities, that, in a kind of elementary strife, destroyed each other: and many men of wit have endeavored to prove that they were mistaken. Much may be adduced by wits and metaphysicians on both sides of the question. But from experience, I am apt to believe that they do weaken each other, and that great quickness of comprehension, and facile association of ideas, naturally preclude profundity of research. Wit is often a lucky hit; the result of a momentary inspiration. We know not whence it comes, and it blows where it lists.

      endnotes.com

      And to think: In a way, she was Frankenstein's grandmother...

      "He shall bow to no authority and acknowledge no king." - Lucian

      by Unitary Moonbat on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 09:07:41 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  wit and Wollstonecraft (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tryptamine, hrh, Unitary Moonbat

        It's odd to think how different her era was from Behn and Astell's; the world had hardened against women's rights in many ways. It was only 100 years later, but Enlightenment thinkers of her time  were decidely anti-feminist.

        But if wit is a "lucky hit," then Aphra Behn must be some kinda Babe Ruth, know what I'm sayin'...?

        "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

        by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 09:13:08 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I had to do a little digging to find that one (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tryptamine, aphra behn

          Wollstonecraft is a lot more dour than the women of the century before; most of her more readily-googleable quotes have the air of a voice-in-the-wilderness rant.  I dig her because she managed to pack so much living into such a short span of time - she's a model for how to remain unbowed in the face of tyranical oppression (in addition to just plain old bad luck).

          "He shall bow to no authority and acknowledge no king." - Lucian

          by Unitary Moonbat on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 09:29:35 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  liberals and conservatives, 17th/18th century (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Unitary Moonbat

            What's odd about the shift between their times: most of the "feminist" voices of Behn's era were "conservative"--i.e., Tories. They opposed the movements that we think of as "progressive"--the Whigs behind the Glorious Rveolution. In a weird way, they were right to do so; by Wollstonecraft's time, Enlightenment "progressives" like Rousseau had written women out fo the public sphere altogether. No wonder she sounds so desolate!

            It just goes to show you ahve to be careful in assigning present-day labels to past movements. The Tories of Behn's day were regessive in their embrace of royal power, to be sure. Yet they opposed the escesses of merchant capital in a way that seems very "liberal" today. And their tolerance for sexuality, their willingness to give women (elite women at least) a role in public life---these too seem progressive today.

            Ain't history fun? :)

            "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

            by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 09:42:58 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  That was just dynamite.... (8+ / 0-)

    And before a discussion of your "handle" recently, I really don't remember ever hearing about Aphra before.   And I always thought I was kinda decently informed....

    I have some favorite witty women who wrote in the early 1800s on Old Maids: Maiden Meditation is just delightfully snarky for 1845.

    A Letter About Old Maids isn't quite as snarky, but she gets in a good one about bachelors:

    But all this reasoning in favor of them [old maids] goes directly against old bachelors; for I do not see that they are either useful or necessary, at least not more useful for remaining single (present company always excepted--) and had they been needed, more males would have been allowed to arrive at years of bachelorship.

  •  Wow, aphra! (7+ / 0-)

    What a brilliant diary!  I knew we'd be hearing about Aphra, but I didn't expect to be introduced to several more admirably Supervixenish women of her time.  

    More enjoyable than a whole box of champagne truffles.

    Thank you, thank you, thank you.

    Yes, there are still FEMINISTS on Daily Kos! Join the fabulous Supervixens every Thurs. night.

    by hrh on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 06:11:19 PM PDT

    •  so glad you enjoyed them... (4+ / 0-)

      There are so many fascinating women from the Restoration. I didn't even get into the other women writers who followed up Behn's commercial success, like Susannah Centlivre, Mary Pix, and Delariviere Manley, all of whom followed her example and became commercial writers. Supervixens indeed! :)

      "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

      by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 06:28:36 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Restoration England was a good time (5+ / 0-)

      for powerful, sexual women.  The plays are all delightfully sinful.  Possibly because they'd FINALLY gotten rid of the Repub--err, Puritians?

      The last time we mixed religion and politics people got burned at the stake.

      by irishwitch on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 07:28:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The Restoration:a moment of possibility (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        FrankFrink, Unitary Moonbat

        What I love about the Restoraiton is that everything feels so unpredictable. It's really difficult in some ways to read. Behn and Astell were both Tories: does that make them "conservative" by our lights? Hardly. I just find the whole re-invention of society fascinating...and, of course, the place that some women were able to carve for themselves in that society.

        "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

        by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 07:34:59 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  is this the other faction of (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tryptamine, hrh, Thursday Next, aphra behn
    Kos/ovarians?

    damn, every night I have to be feminist in a different way.....

    oh-and if you dig hx-ical fems--please feature Sor Juana Inez de la Cruz, sometime!

    Rome wasn't burnt in a day.

    by Miss Devore on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 06:13:30 PM PDT

    •  They're derivative - we were the first (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Thursday Next, aphra behn

      But who cares, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery - let a thousand feminist flowers bloom :-)

      Nice to see you here, Miss Devore.  How's the art stuff going?

      I'd like to profile Rosa Bonheur sometime.

      Yes, there are still FEMINISTS on Daily Kos! Join the fabulous Supervixens every Thurs. night.

      by hrh on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 06:16:21 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  sor juana (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tryptamine, hrh, Thursday Next

      Now that's a great topic! I've read a little about her and she is one interesting lady. Definitely another 17th century Supervixen! I'll tuck that away for a future diary idea..

      "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

      by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 06:39:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  How about Cheng I Sao (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tryptamine, hrh, aphra behn

        Chinese pirate, early 19th century?  She commanded more than 1000 ships and tens of thousands of men.  Even Britain and Portugal were forced to cut a deal with her - and this on the heels of Trafalger.  

        "He shall bow to no authority and acknowledge no king." - Lucian

        by Unitary Moonbat on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 09:20:13 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  LOL! My students just read an article about her (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tryptamine, hrh, Unitary Moonbat

          ..last month! It's in the wonderful Bandits at Sea: A Pirates Reader.

          Hmmm....maybe a diary on women pirates? Grania Ni Mhaile, Cheng Sao, Anne Bonny and Mary Read...?

          "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

          by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 09:22:39 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Sounds like a great idea! (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            hrh, aphra behn

            And right up your alley!  Arrrg.

            (great resource, btw - my students may be seeing it in a month or two)

            "He shall bow to no authority and acknowledge no king." - Lucian

            by Unitary Moonbat on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 09:32:26 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  are you doing something with the Restoration? (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Unitary Moonbat

              Let me know if I can help---this is one of my very favourite topics, as you can see! :)

              I'm giving a talk on pirates tomorrow night, funnily enough. ARRRRGH, indeed!

              "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

              by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 09:37:16 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Regrettably, NCLB and standardized testing (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                aphra behn

                make for a real drive-by type curriculum, so this type of in-depth vignette is quite helpful.  I usually address pirates after talking about Queen Anne's War - great lesson about what can happen when a government musters out thousands of veteran soldiers, then leaves them in the lurch with few job skills but swinging swords and firing canons.

                "He shall bow to no authority and acknowledge no king." - Lucian

                by Unitary Moonbat on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 09:53:47 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Pirates and freebooters, oh my! (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Unitary Moonbat

                  Lots of fun stuff you can do with that, NCLB be damn'd! One of the few things that Pirates of the Caribbean got right (favulous film, don't get me wrong, just not very historical) was the way that the east India Company really pressed the prosecution of pirates. You could even do something subversive with the way a powerful corporation helped grind down those freedom-loving rebels....not that this has any contemporary relevance of course, just sayin'...;)

                  "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

                  by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 09:59:28 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

          •  oh yeah! (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            aphra behn, Unitary Moonbat

            That would be a FANTASTIC Supervixens diary!

            Maybe you and Unitary Moonbat can collaborate?  Or do different parts?  UMoonbat, I would love for you to do a Supervixens sometime - I'm a big fan of your history diaries.

            For those who are interested in the subject of dauntless seafaring women, let me suggest three excellent books: She Captains, Petticoat Whalers, and Hen Frigates, all by the writer Joan Druett.

            Yes, there are still FEMINISTS on Daily Kos! Join the fabulous Supervixens every Thurs. night.

            by hrh on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 09:34:02 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  LOL--I own 'em all! (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              hrh, Unitary Moonbat

              I have all those books on my office shelf!

              Maybe Moonbat could give us something on women of the Mayan variety? (I hear he knows a lot about that stuff...) Or of the Crusades...? Or...?

              "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

              by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 09:36:15 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  She and I have been planning a collaboration (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              aphra behn

              for a while now, but it's been delayed due to my tardiness in getting through the Civil War.  I'm hoping to get to Appomattox in a couple weeks, then take a break from US history, starting with a 4-diary series in partnership with aphra. She did a fantastic job hosting a Cave-rant a few weeks ago, and doing an alternating series with her oughta be a lot of fun - like, guesting Supervixens fun.  Thanks for both the offer and the kind words!

              Above, aphra suggests something on the Maya, which could work well - although the last time I did one on them, it generated the lowest number of comments of any HfK since before the Crusades :-(  Still, I really dig them (my degree's in Ancient Mexican civs), and would love to have a reason to look at a relatively unexplored angle of Classical Mayan society.  Let's stay in touch - especially as the release date for "Apocalypto" approaches.

              Those books look great - if they were Kos diaries, I'd probably be tempted to rec 'em based on their titles alone!

              "He shall bow to no authority and acknowledge no king." - Lucian

              by Unitary Moonbat on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 10:29:00 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Hooray for mayan supervixens! (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                hrh, Unitary Moonbat

                Perhaps I'd be the only one, but something on pre-Columbian women of power and majesty sounds really cool to me. Even if you dealt mainly in myths; hmm, now there's an interesting topic: Supervixens of mtyhology...

                "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

                by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 10:43:07 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  Ok, I'll email you (0+ / 0-)

                with some thoughts.

                Looking forward to your future diaries, both with Aphra and solo.  Do you have a particular schedule for your diary postings - day/time?  If so I'll have to put it on my calendar because I've missed a lot of them.

                The Druett books are fun!  I think I have an extra copy of "Hen Frigates" somewhere around, if you'd like it.

                Yes, there are still FEMINISTS on Daily Kos! Join the fabulous Supervixens every Thurs. night.

                by hrh on Fri Oct 20, 2006 at 09:00:02 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

  •  Fabulous, Aphra! (5+ / 0-)

    Make sure to put this in the book I've been trying to get you to write.  ;-)

    I have to admit I'd never heard of Aphra Behn before I saw your username.  I'm glad to know about her - thanks!

    (prole)

    •  The Restoration is a pretty easy sell (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Thursday Next, fiddlingnero

      Lots of sex and scandal--definitely the makings of a good popular history. There's a BBC series about Charles 2 I'm dying to watch--stars Rufus Sewell as Charles II--yummy!

      "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

      by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 06:31:59 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  What was the Johnny Depp movie like? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        aphra behn

        The Libertine?  I haven't seen it yet.

        Yes, there are still FEMINISTS on Daily Kos! Join the fabulous Supervixens every Thurs. night.

        by hrh on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 06:38:20 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  The Libertine: mini-review (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tryptamine, hrh, Thursday Next, FrankFrink

          I enjoyed the Libertine, even though (of course) it takes historical license. Elizabeth Barry is a prominent character; the movie goes along with the tradition that Rochester trained her as an actress.

          It is a brutal film, though, and not exactly light fare. It paints Rocester as a very dark person and portrays his libertinism as a sort of death wish--not sure I agree with that, but it makes for a gripping story.

          My biggest complaint with the film? Aphra Behn isn't in it! It gives a lot of time to Shadwell, who wrote a different play about Rochester (called the Libertine). I would have liked to see Behn's more affectionate take on him in The Rover at least mentioned, but I don't think that would have fit with the movie's tone.

          And Johnny Depp is friggin AMAZING in it. Naturally!

          "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

          by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 06:43:40 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  It compressed a number of events. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            hrh, aphra behn

            And it DID gethis mother right.  Poor WIlmot--with that religious fanatic of a mother, of course he rebelled.

            And Johnny Depp was wonderful. That man......We concluded he MUST play Jean Claude, the French vampire hero of the Anita Blake books--he's the only one iwth the panache and the depth who could capture JC's seductiveness, menace and pain.

            I am trying tot hink of a movie Johnny Depp was in where he WASN'T superb...and failing.

            The last time we mixed religion and politics people got burned at the stake.

            by irishwitch on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 07:26:22 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Johnny Depp, Charles II, (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              hrh

              Depp is truly amazing. Even when the film sucks, he is amazing!

              I did like the portrayal of his mother, and even the sympathetic way the film dealt with the marriage.

              I didn't like the portrayal of Charles II that well. Although I like Malkovich, the performance seemed a little too cold. And there's no evidence, AFAIK, Wilmot's pornograpphic play was ever actually produced, so including it jarred me....BUT, I have to admit it made for a great scene.

              My favorite protrayal of Charles II (so far, haven't seen Rufus Sewell yet) is Sam Neill in Restoration He's enigmatic yet charismatic. Very powerful and sexy in an understated way. You never quite know what he's up to, or if he's up to anything.

              "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

              by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 07:48:39 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Yes, Neill was lovely. (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                aphra behn

                Charles II was a handsome and compelling man--very sexual, very ribald, very witty, very smart. Malkovich lacked charisma completely--there was none of the joie de vivre Charles II possessed in great measure.

                I wsunder the imrpessiont hat what actually got him abnned was a peom critical of the king--and that the paly wans't produced (though the dancing dildos was pricelss to watch--as was the French amabassador's response).

                I also loved Stage Beauty. Billy Crudup NEVER did anything for me before that--but as the bsiexual actor, he was seductive as all hell.

                The last time we mixed religion and politics people got burned at the stake.

                by irishwitch on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 08:00:13 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  Ah... Johnny Depp (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              vcmvo2, FrankFrink, aphra behn

              What can I say about Johnny Depp.  It's not so much his good looks I adore, but his fearlessness.  He just throws all he's got into a role, regardless of the consequences.

              Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas is one of my favorite movies.

              Yes, there are still FEMINISTS on Daily Kos! Join the fabulous Supervixens every Thurs. night.

              by hrh on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 07:57:34 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  He made it on his own terms (5+ / 0-)

                taking  roles no one else would have. I love Captain Jack deeply--because under all the   limp-wristed swagger (and I htink msot AMericans would be shocked by how effeminate the fierce heroes of hsitory, fromt he restorationa nd 18th century, would seem today) there's a brave man lurking.  Facing the Kraken : ""Allo, Beastie!"  WHen it really counts, Jack comes through.

                I fellin love with him in Edward Scissorhands. The sweetness there (typical of Burton's films, really; they're strange but sensitive and touching) had me in tears. And he was beautiful--the inspiration for Little Goth boys.  I saw a young man at a Fetish Weekend dressed as Edward--the patent leather jump suit,t he wilkd hair.  It was SUCH a temptation.  He never spoke to anyoen all weekend.  

                The last time we mixed religion and politics people got burned at the stake.

                by irishwitch on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 08:04:04 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

  •  "...spectacle, farce, and sex...Aphra excelled at (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    hrh, Thursday Next, aphra behn

    all three."

    No wonder she's better known by her married name, Aphra d'Eziac.

    •  hah (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      hrh, Thursday Next, irishwitch

      Well, according to her fellows, and some of her own writing) she did excel at all three...as well as excel at writing about them, of course. ;)

      She wrote a rather amusing poem about falling down drunkenly after spending the night carousing with some of her fellow writers--definite spectacle and farce there!

      "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

      by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 06:30:41 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  can you post it? (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Thursday Next, aphra behn

        Sounds like it's up my alley :-)

        Yes, there are still FEMINISTS on Daily Kos! Join the fabulous Supervixens every Thurs. night.

        by hrh on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 06:33:58 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Here's Aphra's poem: (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          hrh, Thursday Next, JPete, Catrina

          She's writing to Thomas Creech, her buddy who probably helped her with the Latin..he is "Daphnis" in their circle.
          A Letter to Mr. Creech at Oxford, Written
          in the Last Great Frost.
          by Aphra Behn

          Daphnis, because I am your debtor
          (And other causes which are better)
          I send you here my debt of letter.
          You should have had a scrap of nonsense,
          You may remember left at Tonson's.
          (Though by the way that's scurvy rhyme, Sir,
          But yet 'twill serve to tag a line, Sir.)
          A billet-doux I had designed then,
          But you may think I was in wine then;
          Because it being cold, you know,
          We warmed it with a glass—or so,
          I grant you that shie wine's the devil,
          To make one's memory uncivil;
          But when 'twixt every sparkling cup,
          I so much brisker wit took up;
          Wit, able to inspire a thinking;
          And make one solemn even in drinking;
          Wit that would charm and stock a poet,
          Even instruct————who has no wit;
          Wit that was hearty, true, and loyal,
          Of wit, like Bays', Sir, that's my trial;
          I say 'twas most impossible,
          That after that one should be dull.
          Therefore because you may not blame me,
          Take the whole truth as ——— shall sa' me,

          From White-Hall, Sir, as I was coming
          His sacred Majesty from dunning,
          Who oft in debt is, truth to tell,
          For Tory farce, or doggerell,
          When every street as dangerous was,
          As ever the Alpian hills to pass,
          When melted snow and ice confound one,
          Whether to break one's neck, or drown one,
          And billet-doux in pocket lay,
          To drop as coach should jolt that way,
          Near to that place of fame called Temple,
          (Which I shall note by sad example)
          Where college dunce is cured of simple,
          Against that sign of whore called scarlet,
          My coachman fairly laid pilgarlick.

          Though scribbling fist was out of joint,
          And every limb made great complaint;
          Yet missing the dear assignation,
          Gave me most cause of tribulation.
          To honest H—le I should have shown ye,
          A wit that would be proud t'have known ye;
          A wit uncommon, and facetious,
          A great admirer of Lucretius,
          But transitory hopes do vary,
          And high designments oft miscarry,
          Ambition never climbed so lofty,
          But may descend too fair and softly,
          But would you'd seen how sneakingly
          I looked with this catastrophe
          So saucy Whig, when plot broke out,
          Dejected hung his snivelling snout,
          So Oxford member looked, when Rowley
          Kicked out the rebel crew so foully;
          So Perkin once that god of Wapping,
          Whom slippery turn of state took napping,
          From hope of James the Second fell
          Into the native scounderel.
          So lover looked of joy defeated,
          When too much fire his vigour cheated,
          Even so looked I, when bliss depriving,
          Was caused by over-hasty driving,
          Who saw me could not choose but think,
          I looked like brawn in sousing drink.
          Or Lazarello who was showed
          For a strange fish, to th' gaping crowd.
             Thus you by fate (to me sinister),
          At shop of book my billet missed, Sir.
          And home I went as discontent,
          As a new routed parliament,
          Not seeing Daphnis ere he went.
          And sure his grief beyond expressing,
          Of joy proposed to want the blessing;
          Therefore to pardon pray incline,
          Since disappointment all was mine;
          Of Hell we have no other notion,
          Than all the joys of Heaven's privation;
          So, Sir, with recommendments fervent,
          I rest your very humble servant.

          Postscript
          On twelfth-night, Sir, by that good token,
          When lamentable cake was broken,
          You had a friend, a man of wit,
          A man whom I shall ne'er forget;
          For every word he did impart,
          'Twas worth the keeping in a heart:
          True Tory all, and when he spoke,
          A god in wit, though man in look.
          —To this your friend—Daphnis address
          The humblest of my services;
          Tell him how much—yet do not too,
          My vast esteem no words can show;
          Tell him—that he is worthy—you.

          "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

          by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 06:57:12 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I love it! (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Thursday Next, aphra behn

            She had quite a vivid personality.  It jumps off the page. (or screen, in this case)  I've never read any of her poetry before - only one of her plays.  Many thanks.

            Yes, there are still FEMINISTS on Daily Kos! Join the fabulous Supervixens every Thurs. night.

            by hrh on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 07:06:54 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  yes, she's very vivid in this (0+ / 0-)

              Hr political poems and "pindaricks" are much stiffer and less lively. I like this one, where she's writing to a friend. You get a  real sense of how much fun she really was!

              "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

              by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 07:43:11 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  This diary is . . . (5+ / 0-)

    . . . an example of one of the things I love about DKos: the depth of knowledge that is shared on a huge variety of topics.

    Well done!

    "We must love one another or die." - W. H. Auden

    by marathon on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 06:33:02 PM PDT

  •  I sure wish I had time to read this... (5+ / 0-)

    ...so I'm writing a note here so that I can use it to find my way back this weekend.

    I'm exhausted, midterm grades are due tomorrow at 4pm and I have a humongous amount of homework.

    If anyone is interested, "A good presentation to the college's Board of Trustees is a done presentation to the college's Board of Trustees."

    Teacher's Lounge opens each Saturday, sometime between 10am and 12 noon EST

    by rserven on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 06:34:02 PM PDT

  •  What a beautiful diary, Aphra ~ (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tryptamine, hrh, FrankFrink, aphra behn

    I love the pictures and  the way you told the story. I wonder if she would be surprised that her story is being read nearly 400 years after she died ... thank you and I just discovered your diary on the two women who opposed torture which I am going to read now ....

    •  I think Aphra would be pleased to be remembered (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tryptamine, Catrina

      She wrote once that she was not just writing for money, but that she valued fame. I suspect she'd be pleased. :)

      "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

      by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 07:24:02 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  lol ~ well, then she would be pleased (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tryptamine, aphra behn

        It's fascinating how some people stand out in their time and endure ~ I wonder how many we don't know about.  There are probably untold numbers of stories we'll never know, because they weren't written ...

        •  "I value fame as much as..." (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tryptamine, hrh

          "I value fame as much as if I had been born a Hero; and if you rob me of that, I can retire from the ungrateful world, and scorn its fickle favors."

          You're right about all the stories we don't know. That's why I like to recover all the ones we possibly can! :)

          "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

          by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 07:38:13 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I was lucky enough to see one of Behn's plays (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    hrh, aphra behn

    as an off-off-off Broadway production--no scenery, minimal costuming (the average SCA event  has much better)--but the wit and the freshness and the supermodernity of the play seduced me utterly.

    I was an ENglish major as an undergrad--two semesters of Shakespeare, two of Elizabethan and Jacobean drama, two od modern Brit and American drama.  Somehow I m,issed the Restoration courses--I got out a semester early and hd to take student teaching, so it was a timet hing. But I loved the ones i read for my own pleasure.   They feel so feminist in many ays--poor Millamant terrified of marrying herbivore and then dwindling into a wife who'll be abandoned for his latest mistress.   The women in them have the guts to chose their lovers over the hsubands who've been forced on them by family or circumstances.  It's so different from the Jacobean era, where women are either villainesses or victims. And if people think today's horror films are gross--they need to read some Jacobson drama. THOSE folks were kinky int he same way as Republicans.  

    Restoration is mroeliek SHakespeare,w ith a cheerful,  happy bawdiness--adn the fact that women could play the heroiens made it work so much better.

    The last time we mixed religion and politics people got burned at the stake.

    by irishwitch on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 07:23:43 PM PDT

    •  which one? (0+ / 0-)

      I've seen both The Rover and the Lucky Chance in production (served as a consultant for one of them). Marvelous stuff. The plays really sparkled with humor.

      I think Restoration comedy is a bit under-appreciated. You're right that it feels very feminist, especially when compared to Jacobean drama.

      Although, I am a fan of "The Roaring Girl," about Moll Cut-purse the real-life cross-dresser, pickpocket and unconventional woman Mary Frith:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/...

      "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

      by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 07:41:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I cannot remember. It was 20 years ago--and the (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        aphra behn

        years since then have been spent FAR from theaters except of the  amateur kind (I DID get to see The Scarlet Pimpernel musical ).

        One of the things I don't think 21st century AMericans realize is that the mannerisms of  men fromt he 17th and 18th centuries or event he early 19th would  strike them as beign effemiante. They used Tim ROth beautifully to make that point in Rob ROy--the dnady in lace and silk and powder and patch whoc an make an extravagant leg--and who is a vicious fencer and a rakehell.  

        I HAVE seen a production of Way of the WOrld--the college performers added a trio of  Restoprationt heater goers who clarified the plot for everyoen--adn they did the two  suitors in puce and turquoise, with similarly tented wigs.  It was delightful.

        The last time we mixed religion and politics people got burned at the stake.

        by irishwitch on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 08:10:03 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  men in tights (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tryptamine

          One of the points I try to make to my students about the supposedly "effiminate" men fot he 17th and 18th centuries is that by looking so delicate they were actually making statements of power and wealth: "I can AFFORD to wear fancy, delicate clothing, beeeyotches!" But it's a tough for us to wrap our heads around.

          That production sounds wonderful. Love the costume design!

          "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

          by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 09:53:19 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I make costumes as a hobby-- (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            slksfca

            Renaissance Italian, Cavalier, bellydancing, Middle Eastern historically accurate clothing, even handsewed a regimental kilt once.  I've expanded to VIctorian, but I REFUSE to do anythign antebellum or Civil War--tired of glorifying a SOuth built ont he backs of ownign and abusing humans.

            The last time we mixed religion and politics people got burned at the stake.

            by irishwitch on Fri Oct 20, 2006 at 10:54:57 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

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