Re: snapshots

John Oughton (john.oughton@SHERIDANC.ON.CA)
Tue, 9 Jan 1996 20:21:48 -0500

Hey, Ted. Glad you've connected with the great S so well -- but, even
thought I've never actually *taught* Shakespeare in the classroom, I
don't think teaching him is sacriligious at all. First of all, he showed
no interest in his plays being available in book form during his life --
he did want his poems printed, but some experts think S. considered his
plays "entertainments" written for money and the moment. Lucky for us he
happened to be a genius.
Secondly, I think students -- whether they're initially "open" to a
course on S. or not -- could benefit from a good one. They should
certainly see the works performed live -- that's where they're best --
but the changes in vocabulary, cultural referents, history, technology (I
see your bodkin and raise you a firkin) have been immense since 1600, and
most students need some help in bridging that gap to really "get" the
Bard at first. I think.

"Anyone who cannot cope with life while he is alive needs one hand to
ward off a little his despair over his fate... but with his other hand
he can jot down what he sees among the ruins..." -- Franz Kafka
John Oughton, Sheridan College, Box 7500, Brampton ON Canada
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