Deviance Changes over Time

Text books from the mid-60s have this to say about social deviance.  Most social deviance was (and still is) totally outside of actual acts conducted by people. Knavery, skulduggery, cheating, unfairness, crime, sneakiness, malingering, cutting corners, immorality, dishonesty, betrayal, graft, corruption, wickedness and sin. These are all things that people did to earn their label […]

Deviance: it’s what society says it is

I’ve started my latest The Great Courses course thanks to a friend and fellow author who got to choose what we did next (so many choices!). I think  that this isn’t going to be quite what either of us expected, but it certainly is interesting and no shortage of something(s) new to learn. So the […]

Why Shakespeare would have made a good romance writer

1. Shakespeare was ‘pirated’ mercilessly by publishers most of whom did not seek his permission before publishing and selling his plays or sonnets. They changed them, dis-ordered them and tweaked them to make them more marketable, uncaring about the author’s intent. This is because they were so highly commercial (like romance fiction) and publishers wanted […]

Shakespeare: Anarchist or conformist?

For all his inventiveness and rule-breaking and bar-setting and anarchy in his staged works, Shakespeare stuck faithfully (and almost rigidly) to the iambic pentameter poetical form of his time (AB AB CD CD EF EF GG rhyming pattern) using precisely seven rhyming sounds and exactly 140 syllables per poem. Within that, he tried to be […]

Shakespeare’s poetical loves

In 1609, toward the end of Shakespeare’s theatre career, but while he was still alive, a publisher released the 154-strong collection of his (never before seen) sonnets, apparently without his permission. Two-thirds of Shakespeare’s sonnets appear to be dedicated to a man; golden-haired, young, aristocratic and fickle. Of the rest, all but two are dedicated to […]

Why Shakespeare is responsible for Tinkerbell…

Shakespeare, like many of his contemporaries, presented Faery as tiny, ephemeral, winged creatures that could sleep inside a curled flower. In purveying this notion to a global audience through centuries, Shakespeare contributed enormously to the (now) common literary tradition of teeny-tiny faeries a la Walt Disney. This notion that faeries are ‘playful children’ angered author […]

Shakespeare, the meter master

Shakespeare felt that the regular predictability of Iambic pentameter reflected the human pulse, whereas his verse-whether in poetry, song or dialogue, was intentionally lyrical. He believed verse to be more engaging and better for ‘recruiting’ his audience. Its very meter, he felt, was seductive. Taken from The Great Courses’ Shakespeare: The Word and the Action

Shakespeare and verse vs. prose.

Supposedly Shakespeare used verse for upperclass ch’s and prose for lower-class ch’s. He does but not exclusively, he switches btwn them for effect. Hamlet speaks verse until he goes mad when he switches to prose, Prince Hal speaks verse with his father but prose with his tavern-mates, Lady Macbeth speaks verse until she sleepwalks during […]

Shakespeare: 1 Bible: nil

There were 7000 individual words in the collected works of the King James Bible.  There were 27,000 individual words in Shakespeare’s first legitimate published folio. His plays were written to be performed, though his poetry was to be read aloud. He was the master of language in both forms. He used many more words than […]