Article published in:Revisiting Shakespeare's Language
Edited by Annalisa Baicchi, Roberta Facchinetti, Silvia Cacchiani and Antonio Bertacca
[English Text Construction 11:1] 2018
► pp. 38–59
Talking in asides in Shakespeare’s plays
Only in the first Quarto of The Merry Wives of Windsor (1602) and in that of Pericles (1609) can the stage direction “aside” be found. Nevertheless it is abundantly present in modern editions of Shakespearean plays, starting from Shakespeare’s first editors in the eighteenth century. Scholars have defined various categories for this particular theatrical convention (monological, ad spectatores, and dialogical), among which this article investigates the dialogical aside and the pragmatic strategies it involves, when dialogue becomes circumspect, so as not to be caught by other onstage bystanders. Following the results of a preliminary quantitative search, the plays analysed in detail are The Tempest, Henry VI, Part 3, and Antony and Cleopatra.
Keywords: aside, editing, pragmatics, Shakespeare, theatrical conventions
Published online: 27 August 2018
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