Signal to Noise: Designing a Digital Edition of The Taming of a Shrew
Abstract

Abstract:

Designing an edition, digital or otherwise, is not a straightforward process of tool-building, but a creative act bound up with the cultural history of a text. This paper describes key features of a forthcoming digital edition of the Elizabethan play The Taming of a Shrew (first printed in 1594), but also discusses authorship and conflation as topics that cannot be ignored in such a project. As a so-called bad quarto of Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew (first printed in 1623),A Shrew’s textual and metadramatic idiosyncrasies raise questions of critical and editorial method with broad implications for representing dramatic literature in new media. With reference to the interpretive and editorial strategies of Alexander Pope, Edmund Malone, and Leah Marcus, this paper argues that A Shrew’s troubled history exposes the kinds of conceptual and structural blind spots that can manifest themselves in scholarly tools like digital editions.