Sunday, April 22, 2012

S is for Shakespeare

I know, I know. This isn't the etching of him we've all come to recognize (even though that might not really be him, either). And since we won't ever know what he really, truly did look like, he might have well have looked like this, right? He does in my imagination, anyway.
So, why pick him, of all writers, for this project?
Well, I like him, that's why. I really do. Beyond admiring his work, or adoring his work, or even, as we can let ourselves do, becoming temporarily crippled by the brilliance of his work, that we could never hope to match in our own fumbling attempts at literature, I find I really do like this guy.
There's something about Shakespeare the Guy that is weirdly approachable. So many of the Very Greats have a kind of distance around them. They appear otherworldly, or inaccessible, or completely crazy.
Not our man Will.
 At least, not to me.
He's seemed like the kind of fellow who would have been fun to know in life, the kind of guy who would have loved to see what we've done with his work, how much he has inspired our culture. Especially in the very meta sense that so much of his work was inspired by the stories that were considered classics to him. He seems... human.

I recently visited the Huntington Library, which has a copy of the first folio on display. It was open to A Midsummer Night's Dream, which I did appear in, once upon a time, as Helena. I was also in two of his other plays, care to guess which ones? Also, if you're a Shakespeare aficionado, what's your favorite of his plays? (sonnets are also acceptable.)


Jocelyn Rish said...

I admit I'm a Romeo and Juliet kind gal because star-crossed lovers get to me every.single.time. I'm such a sucker for a doomed romance. Not sure what that says about me. :-)

Wishing you continued success with the A to Z challenge,

Heidi said...

I'm a Hamlet gal. I also played Ophelia once upon a time. Perhaps that is why I love it so much. I'm also a big fan of Twelfth Night.

Kate O'Mara said...

Sadly Shakespeare wasn't part of my education. I've made sure to include it with my children. They Love Shakespeare. And I am a happy mum.
#66 following

SherryE said...

Shakespeare had a lot of talent. He's probably inspired many writers!

Lily Cate said...

Hi new people! Very nice to see you here!

Twelfth Night is AAAA-wesome. Agreed.

Julie Daines said...

I'm might stick with Twelfth Night or Much Ado About Nothing or The Merchant of Venice or Hamlet or HOW IN THE HECK DO YOU PICK?! They're all so amazing.

I do love Shakespeare with a passion. Studied him in college. Been to Stratford many times. Love.

Great post. I believe yesterday (April 23) was Shakespeare's birthday. At least, that's when it's celebrated, so nice timing!

Sarah said...

Hi! Just stopping by from the A to Z. Love your blog! By the time I finished university, I'd only read 16 of Shakespeare's plays. So lately I'm on a mission to read the rest. My long-time favorite though is Henry IV Part 1, because it's got everything in it! Perfect blend of comedy and tragedy and wisdom. But I also love the rest of that tetralogy, and Macbeth, and Lear, and Merchant of Venice, and the Tempest, Othello, Richard III... I just hate Hamlet, and I'm not too big of a fan of the comedies. But great post!