[sf-lug] Fwd: who is alex morton
einfeldt at gmail.com
Tue Jan 29 19:39:31 PST 2008
I am not a fan of Shakespeare
I was also not a fan of Shakespeare in high school, and in fact I was not a
fan of Shakespeare until my first year in undergraduate school, at which
time I read "Brave New World". Aldous Huxley does such a great job of using
Shakespeare's quotes. Also, I was really struck by the fact that Huxley's
"beta" class of humans was not entitled to read Shakespeare. Only the tiny
"alpha" class was allowed to read Shakespeare. So I really experienced the
loss to which the betas were subjected, albeit without their knowledge,
because here I was following the main character, John Savage (I think it
is), as he encounters all of Shakespeare's works for the first time, and
Huxley weaves the Shakespeare quotes in such meaningful ways into his text.
I suddenly felt very lucky, because here I was, an ordinary person, able to
read what only the alphas in the Brave New World were able to read. I felt
privileged, and I have been a fan of Shakespeare ever since.
Most people are probably put off by the Elizabethan English, but once you
get past that barrier, you will find Shakespeare to actually be really
moving, and even riveting.
Kristian, have you ever seen Shakespeare performed live? If not, you might
want to see the free Shakespeare in the parks this upcoming summer in SF.
And the key to enjoying Shakespeare is to read the Cliff's Notes!! Cliff's
Notes actually add a lot to the experience. Cliff's commentaries are really
helpful, very scholarly, and reading the plot in a compressed fashion really
tightens up the experience. Then you should really bring a paperback of the
play with you from the SFPL when you see the play, and sort of follow along
as you watch it. Or check out the play on video from the library before
seeing it live, because you really need to see Shakespeare a couple of times
to fully get it. I think that if you do these things, you will really be
I never miss a Shakespearean play when it makes the big screen. Kenneth
Branagh might be seen as a pompous ass, but his four hour rendition of
Hamlet is simply riveting the whole way through. And what a sumptous
eye-candy feast! It is worth checking out this website just to see the
stills of the movie:
In fact, after you get stuck on Shakespeare, sometimes you get the feeling
that most other movies are just McDonalds in comparison. It really is a
genuinely moving experience.
And Shakespeare, done right, can also be a belly-laughing, ROFLMAO
experience, too, in the case of some of his comedies. For example, the cops
in Mid Summer Night's Dream are simply hilarious, if done right. Plus,
taking a date to a good production of Mid Summer Night's Dream is almost
guarranteed to get you laid. ;-) It's just a great date movie / play.
k, that is my Shakespeare rant. heh
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