Richard III

Anne gestures toward Richard with a sword in a crowded street. This engraving by Hubert François Gravelot is an act and scene division derived from Neilson-Hill edition of Shakespeare, 1942.
Folger Shakespeare Library LUNA 26492: [Richard III, I, 2, Richard & Lady Anne] / H. Gravelot del & sculp.

Act 1, Scene 2

Webtext: Folger Shakespeare Library

Audio: Greatest Audio Books via YouTube

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Encountering the Text

This scene in Richard III is perhaps the most cited early modern representation of disability, even by scholars outside our field. We included it for that reason, but also to question its place in the canon.  

  • What are the consequences of centering this as the early modern disability text? 
  • Is Richard’s disability disabling here? 
  • What actually are the power dynamics in this scene, especially around our expectations of the scene and our understandings of disability?
  • How is this scene in conversations with the tropes of The Blind Beggar?