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Day 5: Favorite Villain

So, I was fully intending to write about Richard III, but he’s been getting a lot of love from this meme, so I thought I’d write about Duke Angelo from Measure for Measure instead. I don’t feel I fully get Angelo, but he strikes me as one of Shakespeare’s most nuanced and "realistic" villains. He’s obsessed with justice and morality, and his obsession makes him a difficult man to like. Ultimately, though, it’s not his rigid morality that undoes him, but rather his morality coupled with a powerful desire to taste forbidden fruit. Both his attraction to morality and his attraction to sin seem to me to be wholly genuine. He’s a hypocrite, but a very self aware, self-loathing hypocrite, who seems to me to feel an obligation to enforce the law even if it means condemning himself.

Day 6: Favorite Villainess

Margaret of Anjou! This is not even a question for me. In parts two and three of Henry VI, she could not be more badass. In my mind, she steals the show because of her passionate commitment to her loves and her causes. She acts as king when she perceives that Henry has fallen down on the job, and she shows unflinching devotion to her son. Of course, along the way, there's some torture. Yeah...she's not good to York. Okay, now I'm getting chills of horror thinking about a certain blood-soaked handkerchief, so we'd better move on. ANYWAY. In Richard III, she takes on the role of prophetess. She curses and rails, she foretells the ruin of her enemies. She doesn’t let us forget the Wars of the Roses, even though a temporary peace reigns. Yeah. Made of awesome.
elviaprose: (Default)
So, I've found that my opinions on most of Shakespeare's characters are very difficult for me to express concisely. As the Dude would say, "you know, a lotta ins, lotta outs, lotta what-have-yous. And, uh, lotta strands to keep in my head, man."

In an attempt to keep myself from getting too tangled, I'm going to try an experiment. I'm going to try answering in under one hundred words:

So, for Day Three: (Your favorite hero)

I’ve selected Bassanio as my hero of choice because I like that he’s a Romantic Lead living in a play in which pretty much everyone seems a little confused about the nature of love. He tries his best to do what’s right, but he doesn’t quite know what’s right. His story raises fascinating questions about what love means and how we should treat the people we love—questions about whether love should be about contracts and obligations and about whether love can be shared.

And Day Four: (Your favorite heroine)

Paulina is sensible, eloquent and loyal. She has a razor sharp tongue and she’s quite rough on Leontes, even after he’s clearly repented. But she berates him out of a deep love and loyalty for Hermione, and also, I think, because she senses that Leontes has come to value her for her ability to remind him of his errors. I love that she’s a woman who is allowed to speak her mind and who speaks with a boldness that comes from love and appreciation of the virtues of her friends.
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Thirty Day Shakespeare Meme: Day Two (Your Favorite Character)

Okay, this will be the last post about Julius Caesar for a while. I'm not sure whether this is cause for rejoicing, mourning, or just...feeling vaguely apathetic. Regardless, today’s post is about Cassius.

And see how I regarded Caius Cassius... )
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So, despite my love of LJ, I’ve never posted a public (or even friends only) entry on my journal. This is not because I don’t believe in such things; I’ve just never found the right way to get started. All that is about to change, however, as I leap onto the Thirty Day Shakespeare bandwagon. Brace yourself, everyone. I may not post every day, but I plan to work my way through all thirty days. The topic for day one is “your favorite play.”

...Okay, it’s Julius Caesar. You don’t have to pretend to be surprised. But here’s something that might surprise you: I’ve decided not to discuss the relationship between Brutus and Cassius at all. Just for variety’s sake, because there are so many aspects of the play that I love.

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September 2014



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