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Lobby 2. Welcome Main Community Discussion Board topic #91170
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Subject: "RE: The two Shakespeares." Previous topic | Next topic
Mesg #91181 "RE: The two Shakespeares."
Author RavenCorbie     Click to send private message to this author Click to view this author's profile Click to add this author to your buddy list Click to send message via AOL IM
Author Info Member since Oct 17th 2005
7824 posts
Date Wed Jul-18-12 10:16 PM
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In response to In response to 0

This surprises me.

Apparently, I had a strange education, because in all of the classes where we studied Shakespeare, none of my professors or teachers ever said that he was popular because of his beautiful language. Certainly many of us think his language is beautiful today, but most of my teachers/professors have specifically stated that his popularity was a result of his storytelling ability, as well as his baudiness and ability to connect with a more common audience -- basically all the stuff Erin mentions in her post.

I think the idea of "Two Shakespeares" comes to us because in OUR days, the people who typically read Shakespeare, at least for pleasure, are seen as the educated elite, and the "common masses" for whom Shakespeare originally wrote, don't usually want to try to decipher Middle English. I think that if it were as easy to read as it is to watch an episode of the latest reality show, Shakespeare would be seen less as some kind of high brow poetry accessible only to a snobbish few and more like the type of writer he really was back when he was writing.

So, the audience for Shakespeare's actual plays has changed, but the audience for Shakespeare's stories (in any language) is probably the same. Which means that he has only increased his audience, rather than one of the audiences being "right" and the other being "wrong". I think they are popular today for *both* their language and popularity, and the obscurity/beauty of the language as it is seen today has brought in an audience who, in Shakespeare's day, would have possibly looked down on his works.

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The two Shakespeares. [View all] , Weird Jim, Wed Jul-18-12 12:24 AM
  RE: The two Shakespeares., sianablackwood, Jul 18th 2012, #1
RE: The two Shakespeares., Erin_M_H, Jul 18th 2012, #2
RE: The two Shakespeares., l_clausewitz, Jul 18th 2012, #3
RE: The two Shakespeares., bonniers, Jul 18th 2012, #4
RE: The two Shakespeares., sianablackwood, Jul 19th 2012, #6
      RE: The two Shakespeares., bonniers, Jul 20th 2012, #7
RE: The two Shakespeares., RavenCorbie, Jul 18th 2012 #5
RE: The two Shakespeares., bonniers, Jul 20th 2012, #8
      RE: The two Shakespeares., RavenCorbie, Jul 21st 2012, #9
           RE: The two Shakespeares., bonniers, Jul 21st 2012, #10
                RE: The two Shakespeares., RavenCorbie, Jul 22nd 2012, #11

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