Flowcomm/Flickr/Sol Plaatje House Museum
The life and work of seminal South African writer, intellectual and politician Sol Plaatje seems more relevant than ever. We look into some of the latest scholarly inquiry.
A modern Christmas Carol.
BBC/Scott Free/FX Networks
We have an innate desire to be reminded of darkness and mortality during the festive season.
Teachers often assign older books.
Stories like 'Romeo and Juliet,' 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland' and 'Jane Eyre' are still relevant today.
Shakespeare’s ‘The Tempest’ contains timeless themes around resistance and colonialism. Here in an engraving by Benjamin Smith based on a painting by George Romney of Act I, Scene 1 of ‘The Tempest’ by William Shakespeare.
(Benjamin Smith/George Romney/ Library of Congress's Prints and Photographs division /pga.03317)
Actors and theatre scholars seek to understand how 'The Tempest' could have been used by both European colonialists and also by advocates of resistance.
Macbeth’s Scottish heaths may seem a long way from tropical Queensland, but there are points of connection.
Seeking ways to engage students with Shakespeare's Scottish play in far north Queensland, highlights disjunctions and surprising correlations between play and place.
Children watch a performance of Much Ado About Nothing at Shakespeare’s Globe.
Cesare De Giglio/Shakespeare's Globe
Study uncovers what inner-city teenagers really thing about Hamlet et al.
Wes Mountain/The Conversation
Shakespeare’s first reputation was as a poet, and particularly as a sex poet. He would later incorporate his bawdy inclinations into his most famous plays.
Transversal Theater Company production of Titus Andronicus, 2012.
Even Samuel Johnson found some of Shakespeare's violent scenes unwatchable.
Jules Salles-Wagner’s 1898 painting ‘Romeo and Juliet.’
We talk excitedly about meeting someone with whom we 'click' or 'really hit it off.' So why do so many of us hesitate to call it love?
Shakespeare can survive a little chipping away at his 400-year reputation.
Many of Shakespeare’s plays addressed queer themes.
We will never know whether or not Shakespeare was queer, but we do know his plays often tackled themes of sexuality in queer ways. Will this summer's productions honour those original ideas?
OlegDoroshin / Shutterstock.com
Car parks seem to be intersecting with English history quite a bit lately.
Francesco Francia, Madonna and Saints (detail).
How would a Jacobean servant react to a trumpet flourish?
Songwriters such as Nick Cave (pictured) and the late Yolngu star Gurrumul have often drawn on the scriptures in their work.
In less than two generations, the proportion of Australians who never pick up a Bible has leapt to seven out of ten. But a robust biblical literacy can help us decode creative works and understand the past.
Anne-MarieDuff and Rory Kinnear as the Macbeths.
Brinkhoff and Moegenburg/National Theatre
Brilliant performances from the two central characters are undermined by a confused production.
The Great War uses scale models to depict catastrophe through a keyhole.
The Great War uses scale models to give a worm's eye view of titanic violence. In Kings of War, by contrast, lethal events are viewed from the unsteady perspective of leaders.
Allan Clayton as Hamlet and Lorina Gore as Ophelia in Brett Dean’s opera at the Adelaide Festival.
Neil Armfield's production of the Brett Dean opera Hamlet is a confronting three hours in the theatre, but then so is Shakespeare's play. The second act is devastating in its emotional impact.
The theme at the core of Rowling’s wizarding world speaks directly to a universal human reality: The struggle to come to terms with our mortality.
We may think of _Harry Potter_ as escapist delight, but J.K. Rowling’s books also contain an extended theme that has more in common with _King Lear_ than most English professors might care to admit.
Relics of St. Valentine of Terni at the basilica of Saint Mary in Cosmedin.
Dnalor 01 (Own work)
Valentine's Day originated as a feast to celebrate the decapitation of a third-century Christian martyr, or perhaps two. It took a gruesome path to becoming a romantic holiday.
French engraving of a cuckolded husband.
University of Victoria
'Cuck', short for cuckold, is the favoured insult of men's rights activists today. But the term has a long history: from the 16th to 18th centuries it reflected a deep anxiety about women's sexual appetites.