On Ophelia, Who Never Got to Be a Hoyden

The casual use of violence perpetrated on the female body in telling a story about a man’s experience will not be news to most people here, but it might be enlightening to look at it in the context of what is often considered to be one of the great works of humanist literature, one that still carries more cultural weight than possibly any other, and is often claimed to speak to all people, everywhere.

Sunday Hoyden: Vale Bea Arthur

I only just caught her fabulous turn as Vera Charles a couple of days ago in the movie Mame! and thought to myself “what a great hoyden”, and today I heard the news that she has died, aged 86.

Friday Hoydens: the Redgrave women

There’s a lot of attention given to this particular death, partly because of the fame of her family, and partly because her death seems bizarre to those who don’t know much about head injuries. There’s plenty to read about both those aspects in the various MSM reports.

Friday Hoyden*: Michelle Gomez

Gomez is an actor I’ve enjoyed watching for some time, and when I read that she had chosen to play Katharine in a new RSC staging of The Taming of the Shrew I wondered why on earth she had agreed to be in that monstrously misogynist play, whose enduring popularity relies solely on the comedy fireworks in the early scenes between Petruchio and Kate, and the ability of the Kate to gloss over the humiliations she receives. I was disappointed by the idea that Gomez’s glorious abilities in physical comedy were going to be used simply to mask the horror of Katherine’s annihilation yet again. I should have had more faith.