Teatro Español del Siglo de Oro (TESO) on CD-ROM and Website

Review by Adan Griego

WESS Newsletter

Fall 1998, Vol. 22, no. 1

Association of College & Research Libraries
©American Library Association

Teatro Español del Siglo de Oro (TESO) on CD-ROM/Teatro Español del Siglo de Oro on the World Wide Web. [Spanish Theater of the Golden Age]. Madrid: Chadwyck-Healey España S.L.Inc, 1998 (c 1997). 1 CD-ROM+ Manual de usuario [user's guide] ( 132p. ill, 21 cm.) US $5,795 (CD-ROM); Web subscription $500 (1 user) $895 (4 simultaneous users); $1,295 (site license/unlimited users).

The Windows-based CD-ROM when completed in the Fall of 1998 will contain the full text of more than 800 Spanish Golden Age dramatic works. The version tested (Actualización 1) covered seven of the proposed sixteen authors.

TESO's minimum hardware and software requirements are: IBM PC 386/486 or compatible; DOS 6.0 or higher; Windows 3.1; 8 MB RAM in memory; 10 MB of free disk space; VGA or SVGA card and color monitor; CD-ROM drive and controller card with Microsoft CD-ROM extensions 2.1 or higher; Microsoft-compatible mouse.

The user's manual is in Spanish, but loading can be done in English or Spanish with much ease. For purposes of this review, both options were explored.

The initial search screen includes: Browse, Search, Clear and Search Options buttons and a Spanish tool bar for Help, Output and Full Text navigation arrows. Fields indexed are Keyword, Title, Author, Character and Genre. At the end of each field there is an arrow, which links to an alphabetical list of options for each (e.g., author field provides names of writers covered). A simple search for "honor," the leit motif of much of Siglo de Oro drama provides the user with the option of seeing the "text" or "context" of the term in several plays. A click on the "text" button opens up a window on the right half of the screen with a reproduction of the title page, while clicking on the "context" button, opens up a window to the left indicating the author/title, act/scene and line. In both cases the searched term is highlighted. After viewing the full text of the searched term, navigation between and within plays is possible. While these two screens remain open, the original search screen is automatically minimized at the lower left hand corner.

A search combining "honor" and "honra" in the Spanish version did not interfere with the first search. But attempting to perform a more advanced search in Spanish with segment operators, as the manual indicated, e.g. "rey" en , to find occurrences of "rey" in the dedication, did not work. When the operator was changed to English-"rey" in , the search was productive. The search statement for another advanced search combining several fields with boolean and proximity operators, e.g., cont to search for songs in any given work, almost resembled an HTML marked phrase, which is not a very user-friendly option.

The promotional flyer indicates that "first editions have been used whenever possible." A brief explanation of which was first or variant editions would have an added value for the researcher. However, inclusion of the aprobaciones, censuras, privilegios, tasas and licencias, allows scholars to see a faithful reproduction of the text.

This CD-ROM is a worthy addition for those institutions with an active constituency in Siglo de Oro Studies. The benefits (availability of full text, including the prolific Lope de Vega; navigation within/between plays) outweigh the limitations stated above.


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