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Shakespeare Meme

I borrowed this meme from A Girl Walks into a Bookstore. Click on the link to check out her answers, and I would like to tag Anna, Jeannie, Ramya, Suey, and Dawn for this meme.

Feel free to join in even if I haven’t tagged you.

1. What was your first introduction to William Shakespeare? Was it love or hate?

I began my own reading of Shakespeare long before we read it in high school in 9th grade, and I started with Hamlet. I love the tragedy of his plays and the complicated characters. I think it was in 7th or 8th grade we were introduced to the Taming of the Shrew before performing Romeo & Juliet in class in 9th grade.

2. Which Shakespeare plays have you been required to read?

Required Shakespeare in High School was Romeo & Juliet, Hamlet, King Lear, and Macbeth, as well as Henry V and Richard III

Required Shakespeare in College was the same, plus Titus Andronicus, Othello, Julius Caesar, Antony & Cleopatra, Coriolanus, Troilus and Cressida, Timon of Athens.

This does not include the Shakespeare I’ve read on my own, nor his sonnets. Some of my favorites include The Merchant of Venice and As You Like It.

3. Do you think Shakespeare is important? Do you feel you are a “better” person for having read the bard?

Shakespeare is very important…he was one of the early masters. He should be taught in High School and College. you learn a great deal about plot points, character development, motivation, and humanity from his plays…even the comedies.

4. Do you have a favorite Shakespeare play?

Hamlet, hands down!

5. How do you feel about contemporary takes on Shakespeare? Adaptations of Shakespeare’s works with a more modern feel? (For example, the new line of Manga Shakespeare graphic novels, or novels like Something Rotten, Something Wicked, Enter Three Witches, Ophelia, etc.) Do you have a favorite you’d recommend?

I think as long as the modern adaptions–of which I can’t recommend any because I know of none–stay true to Shakespeare’s work but help contemporary readers understand them better, they are fine. However, I think they should never replace the original plays.

6. What’s your favorite movie version of a Shakespeare play?

Hamlet (1996) as portrayed by Kenneth Branagh and with the great Richard Attenborough.

I also love Much Ado About Nothing (1993) with Kenneth Branagh and Emma Thompson–not to mention a young Kate Beckinsale.