99年第2學期-0174 文討：小說、戲劇及演員：狄更斯 課程資訊
This course examines the dramatic aspects of Dickens’ mid 1850 novel Hard Times and his collaboration with Wilkie Collins in the Frozen Deep, a drama rarely covered in the university curriculum.
Charles Dickens was born to follow a stage career. He acted, to huge acclaim, the Byronic hero Richard Wardour in The Frozen Deep in 1857; and from 1858 he threw himself on stage as a vast array of characters from his novels, in his astonishing and successful public readings in Britain and America. He did this partly from love of flash and flamboyance, partly to cling to youth and energy, and partly to prove himself a great actor for the young professional actress he had fallen desperately in love with, Ellen Ternan. These exhausting performances killed him. He left The Mystery of Edwin Drood, an exciting new departure in his fiction, only halfway finished at his death in June, 1870. He was 58 years old.
We will study Dickens’s short, powerful masterpiece, Hard Times (his tenth novel, following Copperfield and Bleak House); view the BBC’s dramatization of HT; and cover in detail and perform selections from the widely acclaimed (then) and little known (now) drama The Frozen Deep. Written by Dickens and Wilkie Collins (author of The Moonstone and The Woman in White), The Frozen Deep was performed by Dickens, Collins, Ellen Ternan, and other notables, at a royal command performance for Queen Victoria in 1857.
We’ll also cover a selection of Dickens’s stage readings, prepared by CD himself, available in Philip Collins’s Sikes and Nancy: Dickens’s Dramatic Readings, and explore (time permitting) the unfinished, brief, provocative Mystery of Edwin Drood.