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Download Mr Bligh's Bad Language: Passion, Power and Theater on H. M. Armed Vessel Bounty eBook

by Greg Dening

Download Mr Bligh's Bad Language: Passion, Power and Theater on H. M. Armed Vessel Bounty eBook
ISBN:
0521466660
Author:
Greg Dening
Category:
Humanities
Language:
English
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press (December 27, 1993)
EPUB book:
1212 kb
FB2 book:
1280 kb
DJVU:
1315 kb
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Rating:
4.7
Votes:
340


Bligh's writing about the South Seas is stoic, unemotional, and mostly nautical.

Bligh's writing about the South Seas is stoic, unemotional, and mostly nautical. Although he was famous for his bad temper and his insults. There is also little, if anything, about Bligh's first voyage as a ship master with Lt. Cook. Cook inflicted more floggings than Bligh, yet Bligh has the bad reputation.

Mutiny on the Bounty summons to the popular mind images of violence and power on the high seas.

Using a range of influences from Diderot to Foucault, Greg Dening reconstructs the voyage of the Bounty as moving between history and mythology, circumventing a dozen discourses. Mutiny on the Bounty summons to the popular mind images of violence and power on the high seas. Dening restores a sense of perspective in this fascinating study of the Bounty through images of space.

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Captain Bligh and the mutiny on the Bounty have become proverbial in their capacity to evoke the extravagant and . It is this paradox that inspired Greg Dening to ask why the mutiny took place.

Captain Bligh and the mutiny on the Bounty have become proverbial in their capacity to evoke the extravagant and violent abuse of power. But William Bligh was one of the least violent disciplinarians in the British navy. His book explores the theatrical nature of what was enacted in the power-play on deck, on the beaches of Tahiti and in the murderous settlement at Pitcairn, on the altar stones and temples of sacrifice, and on the catheads from which men were hanged.

Author: Greg Dening ISBN 10: 0521383706. Published On: 1992-06-26 SKU: 07. Throughout the book, Greg Dening draws on a wide range of intellectual influences, ending with the cinematic versions of the mutiny in the twentieth century.

Find many great new & used options and get the best deals for Mr Bligh's .

Xii, 445 pages : 24 cm. "Captain Bligh and the voyage of the Bounty are the starting point of this new study of the famous mutiny in history, literature and film. Donor challenge: For only 3 more days, your donation will be matched 2-to-1. Triple your impact! To the Internet Archive Community, Time is running out: please help the Internet Archive today.

Passion, Power and Theater on H. M. Armed Vessel Bounty. Published December 27, 1993 by Cambridge University Press. But William Bligh was one of the least violent disciplinarians in the British navy

Captain Bligh and the mutiny on the Bounty have become proverbial in their capacity to evoke the extravagant and violent abuse of power.

"Captain Bligh" is a cliche of our times for the extravagant and violent misuse of power. In fact, William Bligh was one of the least physically violent disciplinarians in the British navy. That paradox inspires the author to ask why, then, did Bligh have a mutiny? Its answer is to display the theatricality of naval institutions and the mythologizing power of history. Mr Bligh's Bad Language is an anthropological and historical study of the mutiny on the Bounty, and its role in society and culture. Throughout the book, Greg Dening draws on a wide range of intellectual influences, ending with the cinematic versions of the mutiny in the twentieth century.
  • terostr
My problem with Mr. Bligh's bad language is that it's hard to find any examples of Mr. Bligh using bad language in this book. Bligh's writing about the South Seas is stoic, unemotional, and mostly nautical. Although he was famous for his bad temper and his insults. We don't get to hear his bad language. There is also little, if anything, about Bligh's first voyage as a ship master with Lt. Cook. Cook inflicted more floggings than Bligh, yet Bligh has the bad reputation. Why? He verbally humiliated underlings. Cook punished men, but left with self-respect. This book is only for the die hard Cook researchers or followers.
  • Itiannta
written by an Australian professor,very well researched and documented,shows that Bligh was not the worst or the best captain at that time.He later went on to become a very good and respected Governor of NSW in the colonies
  • showtime
Greg Dening's work looks over the previous shallow interpretations, in both scholarly works and in popular culture, of Bligh's character and his actions aboard H.M.S Bounty.
In popular culture, Charles Laughton's portrayal of Bligh in the 1935 film whilst entertaining was played more for dramatic effect than historical accuracy but it was, after all, a film and its objective was entertainment, not enlightenment. In Dening's words, "'Captain Bligh' is almost a cliche of our times for misused power.".
Perhaps less understandable is the character assasination that was committed by more scholarly authors such as Hughes in "The Fatal Shore" and Clarks monumental "History of Australia". Though in both cases, these treatises do not deal directly with the incidents aboard the Bounty but in his Gubernatorial duties in New South Wales and his alleged cowardice in dealing with the "Rum Rebellion" and the events preceding.
This is an excellent work for the dedicated reader but it can be hard going for the more casual reader. Even those amongst us with superior vocabularies will require consultations with a dictionary from time to time. This is my sole criticism, however. Recommended!
Mark Harrison
Sydney, Australia
[email protected]
  • Armin
"It's not useful" would be a more accurate expression of why I gave this book 2 stars. I agree with "Whammo" that there isn't much about William Bligh's bad language in the book,and it is also one of those long University Press books filled with erudite language, disorganized ideas, and abstractions. I really don't quite know what the point of the book is.
  • Jogrnd
Social theorists have tried many definitions of human nature: human beings are the animals that make tools, that laugh, that play. I have another: Human-beings are history-makers. We eternally make our present by looking backwards. We present ourselves by expressing a significant past. To know us in our history is to know who we are. -Greg Dening (Performances)
At 4:30 A.M. on April 28, 1789 a series of events began which has ever since held a grip on Western imagination. Fletcher Christian lead a mutiny against Captain William Bligh aboard HMS Bounty. The aftermath of this rebellion included: Bligh's remarkable 4,000 mile journey with 18 loyal crewmen in an open launch; the sinking of HMS Pandora, which had been sent out to arrest the mutineers, with a loss of 34 men, including 4 of the Bounty crew; and the establishment of a weird sort of tropical commune on Pitcairn's Island by Christian and eight other men along with the Tahitian women (and a few friends and progeny) who may or may not have been the precipitating cause of the whole fiasco. Eventually Bligh would return to sea, three of the mutineers would be returned to England and hanged and all but one of the men on Pitcairn's Island would be murdered or die of disease.
Now there's obviously enough material there to justify the boatload of Bounty books, plays and movies that have poured forth in a steady stream over the past two centuries, but what Professor Dening has uniquely done is to consider the uses to which the story has been put over those years. He makes the convincing argument that Captain Bligh, contrary to popular imagery, was not particularly abusive of his men. Indeed, the title of the book is reflective of Dening's position that Bligh was mostly despised for the harsh language he used in upbraiding men, not for any physical measures nor for the quality of his command in general. Having made his case, Dening moves on to a consideration of why our historical understanding of Bligh requires that he be seen as an ogre. If the "reality" is that he was a fairly mild captain for his time, why do we, looking backward, see him as the very embodiment of tyrannical authority? Why are Christian and his cohorts seen as heroes, virtual freedom fighters?
The book is wide ranging, learned, entertaining and thought provoking, but its best feature is the balance that Dening strikes between the effort to present the story of the Bounty as ethnographic history ("an attempt to represent the past as it was actually experienced") and the realization that:
a historical fact is not what happened but that small part of what has happened that has been used by historians to talk about, History is not the past: it is a consciousness of the past used for present purposes.
Everyone who has ever been subjected to a history course in the modern university is familiar with the obsession with primary sources, the Left dictatorship which controls academia insists that the "truth" is to be found in the pamphlets and diaries and letters of the unimportant and the obscure, rather than in the texts and speeches of the great who shaped our understanding of events. Dening, on the other hand, understands that there is a fundamental dichotomy between the way participants experienced historical events and their importance to the society as a whole. In a very real sense, it is simply not important whether Christ was the son of God, whether England ruled the colonies harshly, whether Southerners fought for slavery, whether FDR ended the Depression, whether Nixon subverted the Constitution and Clinton merely lied about sex--what matters is that this is how we perceive these events. In Denings' felicitous phrase: Illusions make things true; truth does not dispel illusion.
GRADE: A-
  • Onaxan
"I am a professor of parables," writes author Greg Dening, "and the Bounty is a parable. Indeed, there is much parable about ourselves in our peculiarly twentieth-century representations of the past of the Bounty." Five of those representations have taken the form of film. Dening has added a sixth, in the form of a three-act academesque. Thoughtful prologue(s), entr'actes, and an epilogue link the narrative to its historical context, its local mise-en-scene, and its modern role as an icon of cultural literacy. The drama takes place aboard ship (a wooden world where the language of every action reverberates upon the soul of the voyage), on the beach (the place where the conquering sea meets the vanquished land, a transitive action complete with subject and object), and on the island (where sailors fall from grace with the sea, "bad language" in anybody's book). The entr'actes bring us face to face with rituals of sacrifice, peace offerings, and politics, a brash yet brilliant contrast of original Polynesian culture with that of colonizing England. In Dening's final analysis, it's all a matter of management - management of work and play, management of the "oeconomy," management of the sublime - all work together to form one unabridged narrative of drama at sea in the eighteenth century. Superb.