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A place to debate issues or to rant about what's on your mind. In addition to discussions about historical fiction, books, the publishing industry, and history, discussions about current political, social, and religious issues and other topics are allowed, so those who are easily offended by certain topics may want to avoid such threads. Members are expected to keep the discussions friendly and polite and to avoid personal attacks on other members. The moderators reserve the right to shut down a thread without warning if they believe it necessary.
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SonjaMarie
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Post by SonjaMarie » Sun December 7th, 2008, 2:08 am

Oh, I read "The Great Gatsby" as well.

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Susan
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Post by Susan » Sun December 7th, 2008, 2:18 am

[quote=""SonjaMarie""]"Julius Caesar" by Shakespeare[/quote]

I knew we read a Shakespeare play a year in high school and I could think of three (Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, and Hamlet), but I could not think of the fourth until I saw your post.
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SonjaMarie
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Post by SonjaMarie » Sun December 7th, 2008, 2:22 am

[quote=""Susan""]I knew we read a Shakespeare play a year in high school and I could think of three (Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, and Hamlet), but I could not think of the fourth until I saw your post.[/quote]

I was in a different English class when I was in my freshman year of HS and I did not read R&J. I didn't read "Hamlet" and "Macbeth" until I took a college course on Shakespeare. I also read "King Lear" and if I remember correctly "A Midsummer Night's Dream". "Hamlet" and "Macbeth" are my favourite plays.

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Post by Ash » Sun December 7th, 2008, 2:26 am

Oh, I forgot about Scarlett Letter (btw for an amazing adaptation, check out the silent movie version). We read Shakespeare but by that time Id seen so many productions with my family that it didn't feel like I was reading it, it wasn't new to me. Wasn't till I took a college Shakespeare class that I really got into reading the plays. We had a very interesting World Lit class (again, AP) that had us reading stories and poems from around the world. I read Silas Marner now that I think about it, didn't care for it all that much.

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SonjaMarie
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Post by SonjaMarie » Sun December 7th, 2008, 2:28 am

Oh I just remembered I read "The Old Man and the Sea", the only Hemingway we read.

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Divia
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Post by Divia » Sun December 7th, 2008, 2:53 am

I dislike Shakespeare too!
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MLE (Emily Cotton)
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Post by MLE (Emily Cotton) » Sun December 7th, 2008, 7:14 am

Shakespeare's plays aren't intended to be read, any more than the screenplays for a movie today are. They are performance pieces, intended to be acted.
The first one I saw (was part of, actually, as a fairy) was midsummer night's dream. Loved it! Went to Macbeth in 9th grade and fell in love with the actor playing MacBeth. The critics hated it, and I couldn't figure out why; I was riveted.
Romeo and Juliet was my first Zefrelli movie. I am also very fond of the movie version of Much Ado About Nothing.
My daughter went through a Shakespeare period, and we went to many plays together at the California Shakespeare Festival. My, I'm getting nostalgic.
The dh simply loathes Shakespeare, though.

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Post by Carla » Sun December 7th, 2008, 1:54 pm

I agree with MLE - Shakespeare's plays are much better watched (if acted well) than read! I can never get beyond about Act One Scene Two if I try to read Shakespeare. When I was at school the head was a Shakespeare fan and used to organise occasional group trips to the Royal Shakespeare Company at Stratford-on-Avon. He'd get a group booking for the cheapest possible seats and borrow the school minibus and the price worked out at just about affordable. One time we went to see Much Ado About Nothing, and the sports teacher had been dragged along by his girlfriend for some High Culture to Improve His Mind. All the way there he was sunk in gloom at the prospect, but by the time Derek Jacobi (Benedict) and Sinead Cusack (Beatrice) had been scoring points off each other for a couple of scenes he was hooked, and on the way back he was announcing it was the best evening out he'd ever had and offering to drive the bus next time :-)

Re Jane Austen, I don't find her twittery. I'd agree that's an apt description of a lot of drawing-room novels - I have one for review at the moment that's set in the same era, and oh boy, it can twitter for England - but for some reason with Jane Austen I feel she's showing the characters twittering without actually putting me through most of it. She can dispose of an afternoon's pointless conversation in a couple of pithy sentences. But then I like Jane Austen's wry humour, and I can forgive a book pretty much anything if it makes me laugh.
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Post by Ash » Sun December 7th, 2008, 3:05 pm

Oh I totally agree about seeing Shakespeare and not reading it. Once you've seen a few, reading and discussing it becomes such a joy (I took a class in Shakespeare in college and just loved it. But then the teacher was a former actor in the Royal Shakespeare troupe so what was not to love :) )

I don't know if kids get to see much Shakespeare played anymore. What movies are the best adaptations, do you think? I did love Gibson's Hamlet, which surprised me. I also watched Shakespeare in Love about five times and kept finding references that I missed the times before! (but that really doesn't count as an adaptation, still it was fun)

The film Much Ado with Branagh and Thompson was great; it was my DHs first experience with the play and we ended up seeing a production here that was pretty good.

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Divia
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Post by Divia » Sun December 7th, 2008, 4:53 pm

[quote=""MLE""]Shakespeare's plays aren't intended to be read, any more than the screenplays for a movie today are. They are performance pieces, intended to be acted.
[/quote]


I've seen em and I still hate em. Sorry I dislike Shakespeare with a passion. It doesnt meatter if I read or watch, its still painful.
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