Where You Put Your Eyes

When I approach King Lear directly after All's Well That Ends Well, Lear takes on some of the fairy tale atmosphere of the earlier(?) play - Tolstoy's objections, withering as long as there is any pretense of modern psychological insight, vanish under the monolithic weight of archetype. And so all of the mental playgoer post-its…

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All is Not Well

The joke about All's Well That Ends Well is, of course that it doesn't end well at all. Helena, the plucky young daughter of a famous physician, bets everything that she can cure the sick King of France. When she succeeds, he promises, in typical fairy tale manner, to give her whatever she likes in…

Soft Spot

Othello is the most tragic of Shakespeare's outsiders, because it almost seems as if he has overcome the barriers that alienate him from his cultural environment. He has had to create a persona that excels in every conceivable way - he has had to become a war hero of matchless courage, a leader radiating cool…