Friday, July 10, 2009

Feature Fridays

Today's featured classic is Shakespeare's Hamlet (1600).


Hamlet is the most popular of Shakespeare's plays for readers and theater audiences, and it is also one of the most puzzling. Many questions about the play continue to fascinate readers and playgoers, making Hamlet not only a revenge tragedy but also very much a mystery. Beyond such questions about the play and its characters lie deeper issues about the rightness of revenge, about how to achieve an ethical life, and about how to live in a world where tears of sorrow, loving smiles, and friendly words are all suspect because all are "actions that a man might play."

It is a play that seems particularly pertinent today -- just as it has seemed particularly pertinent to any number of generations before us.

You can read Hamlet (and other Shakespeare plays) here, here, and here.

Take the Hamlet quiz at SparkNotes.

Do you like reading Shakespeare? Did you read any of his plays in high school? Which one is your favorite?

I do like Shakespeare. I took a class in high school called "Shakespeare." We read and discussed a bunch of his plays: Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth and a few others. I remember my favorite one at the time was Hamlet, but I'd have to read it again to figure out exactly why. My favorite lines are from Horatio right after Hamlet dies.
Now cracks a noble heart. Good night sweet prince:
And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest!
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