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Home :: Archive :: 2003 :: July ::
Re: Michael Wood's In Search of Shakespeare
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 14.1370  Thursday, 3 July 2003

From:           Jim Carroll <
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 >
Date:           Wednesday, 2 Jul 2003 20:12:07 EDT
Subject: 14.1347 Re: Michael Wood's In Search of Shakespeare
Comment:        Re: SHK 14.1347 Re: Michael Wood's In Search of Shakespeare

Keith Hopkins <
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 > wrote on Tuesday, 1 Jul 2003:

>PS. Are there history programmes on American TV?

Sure, on the History channel 24/7 (excluding the UFO stuff, of course).

Shakespeare will always be a magnet for fantasy posing as history; the
"Shakespeare as Catholic" fantasy (and I say this for lack of evidence,
not that it might not be true) is just another example of things like
the Dark Lady, the relationship with the Earl of Southampton,
Shakespeare as Lawyer etc. The connection with the Phoenix and the
Turtle that you mention is probably related to the article in the April
18 Times Literay Supplement, which reads the presence of some kind of
Catholic circle around Shakespeare into the various nouns and verbs of
the poem.

I'm toying with the idea of a fantasy historical novel which in the
first half presents Shakespeare as a straight, Protestant doctor, and
then in the second half a "parallel universe" version where he is a gay,
Catholic lawyer. The hero is trapped in between the two universes, until
a dream narrated by Leslie Hotson reveals the truth in an acrostic
buried somewhere in act 4 of "The Winter's Tale" (which reveals that
Shakespeare was a Mediterranean pirate who entertained his crew with
plays stolen from the naughty and haughty Lord Speare). So that's where
all those Italian settings came from! If The Magazine of Fantasy and
Science Fiction doesn't buy it, maybe the Times Literary Supplement or
the New York Times will.

Jim Carroll

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