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Home :: Archive :: 2001 :: May ::
Why Shakespeare?
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.1180  Tuesday, 22 May 2001

From:           Robert Peters <
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Date:           Monday, 21 May 2001 22:55:51 +0200
Subject:        Why Shakespeare?

I read this in the General Introduction of the Oxford Shakespeare
(Complete Works in one volume): "not until the dawn of Romanticism, in
the later part of the eighteenth century, did he [Shakespeare] come to
be looked upon as a universal genius who outshone all his fellows and
even, some said, partook of the divine. Since then, no other secular
imaginative writer has exerted so great an influence over so large a
proportion of the world's population."

But why is it Shakespeare who became the world champion of literature?
Why not Dante or Moliere or Goethe or Calderon or Camoes or Homer or
Jonson or Chaucer or Eichendorff or Vergil or Pushkin or Corneille or
Ibsen or Dickens or Cechov or Woolf or Marlowe or Gryphius or Brecht
..., all writers who have as much genius as our friend from Stratford?
Why was it Shakespeare who got idolized and adored? Why Shakespeare?

Robert Peters

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