Originally Posted by Pavlos
Using this image of Kenneth Branagh looking rather scared as inspiration, does Shakespeare matter to you? Do you think it should be taught in schools? Is he just pointlessly outdated, kept alive by a bunch of luvvies in large shirts?
Famous because he's famous? You don't even have to say "Shakespeare's works" anymore, simply "Shakespeare" will do...
Well, now. This thread sure livened my day up. I hadn't been to kavar's for a bit.
I thought my entire high school education was as useless as turds in a crock pot. I'm glad to see I was wrong about that. In fact, now that I have read over many posts and taken certain considerations of similar analogies (I.E. points of cultural centrality as I learn japanese I.E. the symbolic meaning of the Samurai, etc.), I can honestly say, now, that my high school education was, in fact, a very rich one.
Shakespeare IMO cannot
, and never will be able to be, *fully* appreciated in just a single subject of class (I.E. English). My experiences with it was in my particular high school's 'acting concepts 1-2' or simply 'basic drama'. I took the class because state curriculum required that I take either a year of fine arts or a foreign language. They didn't have Japanese or Chinese language available, so I took drama being that my father is a performer by trade.
Looking back, I see now that perhaps a very large factor into how I am capable of understanding, and leveling with, others, was this class. It helped me to be more palpable in my english papers later on with the ethos and pathos, though I preferred logos. It gave me ability and focus also to see into one-another's persona when I converse with him or her.
(Heheh. Palpable...palpatine? Fwo-ho-ho! I DO wonder!)
My drama class: we had to do quite a few Shakespeare related things if I do recall. Had to read all the plays, and the history of them and bits and chunks of shakespeare as a whole--probably not near as intensively, nor comprehensively, as some of you have had to do in english courses.
How would I describe it? Sort of like rolling up english, history, anthropology, psychology, speech, old fashioned visual effects, advertising, and perhaps some bits of science in there too, all in one. I don't know how else to describe the complexity of the "case study" assignment. (except huge and intimidating until you actually got into it). My impression: very few beatings on an intellectual level have I ever received. Of them, this has to be one of the most memorable, at least.
Another that rivals that in my educational experience is the book of:
Frederick Douglass: an American slave, a narrative written by himself. I swear, I never got such an ass-kicking in the reading department (and supposedly I'm a natural in reading and comprehension dept.)!
We also had to group up and reenact a play chosen. (My group chose Hamlet--only the bloodiest most violent one
) I loved the part where I played the character talking about laced muttons, and getting all disgruntled and crawling around mimicking a lamb like I'd gone mad. I got quite a few laughs. At the very least you had to be able to act out multiple parts with a fair level of fluidity and believability, and cooperation with your team had to be enough for decent/average timing.
However, the all encompassing interactivity of it was something I'll never forget as long as I live. It is a standard in fact to which I apply and hold many things--often without even realizing it!!!
Ironic how you never think you have use for such things until you reexamine your life AFTER having experienced it.
As well, AP English classes in my high school specializing in british literature seemed to also have concurrently integrated itself with our class's material. So we were quite on the spot to make our stuff good for observation because another class depended upon it, somewhat. I'm not sure to what extent this actually goes, but a great deal of things is possible. Whether it is dual cooperative efforts, after school projects, correlative studies, or fun competitive exhibitions...is anyone's guess.
It was a major grade requirement for the first semester of that class in high school, whatever year you took it. The more advanced classes, you can bet, requiring even more Shakespeare.
Certainly, it set a precedent for other small memorable things in my life.
1) I became a famous guy in my high school's "Air Band" history, definitely in the school history books: nobody before had attempted and succeeded as I had in doing the badboy rock'n'roll routine and getting a HUGE popular response from the crowd. My acts were: Junior year: Kevin DuBrow with Quiet Riot, song "Cum on feel the noize!"; Senior year: Ozzy Osbourne in his band gone solo, song "Crazy Train".
2) Also, in various sword play I do, I seem to be relied upon quite a bit by whomever I am with to make a duel choreography "work" or "happen".
3) At nerd conventions with Star Wars themes and for a community college's anthropology meets or classes on Star Wars I occasionally would make appearances for 'lightsaber duels'.