Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Ask the Experts

Today's column is usually written by one of Shakespeare's characters, but at this time they are too stunned and confused by recent attacks on their True Creator to say much of anything. The Editors of Everyday Shakespeare, Michelle Ephraim and Caroline Bicks, who have more critical distance from the Authorship Debate, will fill in for today.

Caroline and I attended grad school during the heyday of post-modernism, so we understand that the Author is Dead when it comes to literary texts. In other words, we believe that it's very possible that some guy named Shakespeare wrote these plays. But it's also possible that the author might have been the girl next door or a barn animal. Whatever.

That said, we wanted to feature the words of another Expert today, Prof. Jim Shapiro at Columbia, who wrote a brilliant critique of the film Anonymous, "Hollywood Dishonors the Bard." Here's an excerpt, but I highly recommend reading the whole thing:

"The most troubling thing about “Anonymous” is not that it turns Shakespeare into an illiterate money-grubber. It’s not even that England’s virgin Queen Elizabeth is turned into a wantonly promiscuous woman who is revealed to be both the lover and mother of de Vere. Rather, it’s that in making the case for de Vere, the film turns great plays into propaganda. . ."

1 comment:

  1. You know, I love a good "who really wrote the plays" discussion as much anyone, but Roland Emmerlich? Seriously?

    I'm sorry, but if your directorial credits include "Godzilla" and "2012" then, no, you're banned. You don't get to so much as talk about the Bard, much less make a movie about him.

    Besides, wasn't the Earl of Oxford debunked a long time ago?