The Groundlings of Divine Will

Daniel Staniforth

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From the author of Weaver in the Sluices and Diddle comes this controversial, self-reflexive, ironic and humorous response to the way that Shakespeare is so often taught in contemporary academia. The works of ‘Divine Will,’ as he is referred to throughout, have been confined to a vacuum, and almost biblically so in how the scripts have become wilfully detached from their moorings of time and place. In this hybridised long ‘Proem,’ Staniforth goes to absurd lengths of reattachment, gladly playing havoc with the swirling dictums and counter-dictums of his time, gleefully seeking to subvert the tautological authority of the neck-frilled academicians over the historical groundlings of the pit. Elements of satire, parody and burlesque are interposed as hagiographical substitutions made for the purposes of irony and deconstruction. The reader will be initiated into the amalgamated and timeless world of the Groundlings to see how their invective gospel simply illustrates how discourse, rhetoric and that grandiloquent power of oration serves as the strongest definition for our collective place in history.

Staniforth is not afraid to dip into the cosmic trough and find magical pearls among the swine; the flashing twists and barbs of his heretic wit had me going up and down for hours. — Rev. Obadiah Horseworthy

The tension between the divine will and human self-will is a subject that pervades the book; to that subject the profoundest insights into the hidden activity of providence and into human nature are brought. — Emanuel Swedenborg

Born in Edgbaston and brought up in Clapham and later Bolton, Daniel Staniforth writes poetry, fiction and literary analysis and is also a consummate musician. As a co-founder of Skylight Press, Daniel has edited several collections of work by other poets. He currently lives in Colorado and teaches English at the Metropolitan State College of Denver. He also served for three years at the Jack Kerouac School for Disembodied Poetics’ Summer Writing Programme.

  • ISBN: 978-1-908011-66-4
  • 104 pages
  • perfect-bound paperback: 203mm x 131mm
  • black and white text
  • published 26th March 2013