A Project for 2017

Hello again, internet. 2016 wasn’t one of my more talkative years online, and much of my blogging was devoted to the mental health side of things. While I plan to continue that, I want to get back into writing a bit more about the arts.

Ermagherd Sherksper
Gotta catch ’em all!

One of my projects for 2017 will be a complete chronological re-read of all of Shakespeare’s plays. While I’ve read them all at some point or other, there are several that I haven’t revisited for over ten years and the order of reading was quite haphazard. I’m interested to see whether there are any insights to be gained from a chronological read. So here’s the plan:

  • I’ll be using a rough chronology based on the RSC’s timeline. Want to talk about disputed chronology? Be my guest!
  • Each week I’ll read one play and post whatever thoughts I have about it.
  • By “each week” I mean “roughly every seven consecutive days but perhaps more like ten or sometimes fourteen because #freelancelife and also being quite distractible”.
  • I’m not sticking to any particular edition. I assembled my collection of individual plays from charity shops, so I have whatever edition I happened to find.
  • If you want to read along and share your thoughts, that would be delightful. I’ll post a link to the full text for each play for anyone who doesn’t have a Complete Works to hand.
  • If you want to dispute authorship that’s fine, but only if you can both spell and formulate an argument. If you include a link to your book about how Shakespeare’s mum or his third cousin or some completely unrelated person who died a hundred years earlier wrote the plays, I probably won’t approve your comment.

I’ll be starting off with thoughts on Two Gentlemen of Verona in about a week’s time. Join me?


3 responses to “A Project for 2017”

  1. I’m only on Act 3, but I can share some thoughts.

    Act 1 is actually pretty funny. Lots of great wordplay and really clear storytelling tactics. You can almost tell he’s on a bit of a comedic template so to speak. There’s not as much imagination as he has as a more skilled playwright.

    Just like the last time I read it, Proteus repulsed me. Shakespeare sets up the genuineness of their friendship so well and then CRUSHES it with this nearly comic betrayal.

    This play, like Taming of the Shrew, reads to me as one that is better on stage than in thought. Some of the more complicated moral dilemmas are disguised by the fast pace of comedic staging.

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