WordPlay™ Shakespeare

Now, Half the Page is a Stage...

A Title By Any Other Name

Emoji Shakespeare

A
short quiz to see how well you can intuit Shakespeare's play titles from emoji. Not sure how consistent they are in how they make these work, but we managed eleven out of twelve. Give it a shot, and test your skills!

Will Shakespeare, Mastermind



A tongue in cheek look at Will Shakespeare as a quiz show contestant — a couple of clever jokes in there.

So Many Ways To Die, So Little Time...

Horrible Deaths

A nice round up of the many, horrible ways characters in all of Shakespeare's plays die…

Play into Film into Play: Shakespeare in Love, Reborn

Romeo and Ethel
It's always interesting — and sometimes instructive — to see how a story changes when it makes the jump from one medium to another. In this case, The Austin Playhouse is putting on an adaptation for stage of the movie Shakespeare in Love (most recently tainted by the Harvey Weinstein scandal). The review is brief, and gives the adaptation and the performers a solid thumbs up, but acknowledges that it breaks no new ground. A safe, and probably enjoyable evening of theater — just as Shakespeare would have wanted it!

Star Wars Shakespeare Parody Series to Continue

star-wars-books-jedi-the-last-cover-tall
Ian Doescher scored quite a hit several years ago by creating a Elizabethan parody of the Star Wars films (more or less every title tacking "etc" to the end of a word or two and giving it a Shakespearean language veneer). With six tomes under his belt, the next in the series is due out July 7, as announced by Star Wars website. Whatever its limitations in terms of introducing readers to Shakespeare's language, it does certainly convey the rhythm and affect of Shakespeare's work, and can surely only help for students who struggle to understand his language.

Is This a Stick Figure I See Before Me?

20180313-Iconography-LadyMacbeth
Shakespeare: profound, far reaching, capable of the deepest insights into the human soul, etc. So how could stick figure cartoons possibly capture even the smallest part of his oeuvre? Well, Good Tickle Brain somehow manages to do this, and more. For young students, this may possibly provide a helpful first step. Adults too, for that matter.

Insulting

Bite thumb
In the classrooms we have visited over the last few years, we've noticed that Shakespearean insults, and software that generates "Shakespearean-style" insults seems to work well in capturing the imagination of younger students. We recently came across this amusing video of Siobhan Thompson deploying insults in a 21st century context. Cleverly done, and not too insulting…

Teachers Are Already Armed...With Shakespeare (Parody).

Teacher Armed with Shakespeare
The Onion pitches in to the distressing state of weapons in classrooms with this humorous piece - the power of the pen over the sword. If only it were ever thus.

Horrible Histories: Meeting Will


A lighthearted (and light touch) approach to introducing Shakespeare to students, as Will Shakespeare visits an English school to explain, amongst other things, his creative process (just don't call him cheat!)

Upstart Crow

crow-1
Fans of Rowan Atkinson's Blackadder series should know about Upstart Crow. With the same writer (Ben Elton) and yes, the same slightly lowbrow (but gentle) sensibility, Upstart Crow stars English comic actor David Mitchell. With two seasons under its belt, and a third on its way, it offers an enjoyable peep inside Shakespeare's life. Sort of!

If Shakespeare Was Doing A Celebrity Tour Today

New Yorker Bubbe Gum
Illustration by Luci Gutiérrez
The New Yorker's amusing piece imagining Shakespeare as a jaundiced celebrity author doing his umpteenth solipsistic interview

Shakespeare in the News, Sort Of...

Et Tu, Banon?

Cartoonish (New Mischief)

Cartoon of Tony Blair as Yorick
Starting next year, The RSC will display political cartoons influenced by Shakespeare. The influence runs deep, and long ("...an 1846 cartoon depicting the then prime minister Robert Peel's resignation as the fall of Caesar... [to]... Morten Morland's cartoon of David Cameron as Hamlet gazing at Boris Johnson's skull, from 2016"). More.

It's All Just Vector Space Mathematics to Me (Or Maybe Not...)

Monty Python, John Cleese
Fascinating (and a little over our head) article in MIT Technology Review about how computers may one day be able to detect sarcasm, and other subtle linguistic tricks. More.

Calling Dr. Spooner...

Poster for the One Ham Manlet Show
We here at The New Book Press can't resist the occasional Spoonerism. So, here 'tis! More.

Choices, Choices...

Good Tickle Brain Graphic on how to choose a Shakespeare play
Wondering whi to see, and in what order? Wonder no longer, as Good Tickle Brain gives you a easy to use (and amusing) flowchart on how to choose. Enjoy!