If you have to read a Shakespearean play for school or choose to read one on your own, Shakespeare Is Hard, But So Is Life: A Radical Guide to Shakespearean Tragedyis a good companion text. The author Fintan O'Toole offers an innovative way to view Shakespeare. He feels too often teachers offer students a Victorian-style view of Shakespeare that's just off base. His thesis is that Shakespeare was trying to break classic molds. Fintan asserts that the Bard didn't want to fit the classic molds of tragedy involving a character flaw. He wanted to develop a new kind of drama to address the radical changes he saw in his own society.
On the whole, I think O'Toole's on to something, but even when I disagreed or doubted his theory, I was engaged with the new vision.
Citizen Reading: 22 May 2017.
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