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Vive la difference…

… A comment extended and never sent to Dear Mark,

I love reading your blog and have your book from your visit to Amsterdam’s Theatre Institute.

(Such is the web we weave, i trust he’ll see, hear or ignore it).

I am a Stratfordian and taught by the ‘blinkered’ at the Sh Institute. I already had survived Charlton Ogburn’s onslaught of pedestal shaking at that point. I was looking to find out more on the background of the era. As well as indulge my Sh passion 24/7.

What I found was a middle of Britain market town culturally run by the uber-scholarly and infested with RSC. The townies were a different socio-economic bunch. The houses are quaint and feintingly historical.

The Shakespeare industry is however still no more dominant than the agricultural and brewing industries that have always existed there.

So this backwater town idea you all keep projecting doesn’t soar. Fulke Greville for heaven’s sake. Lived in Stratters, wasn’t a backwater hick noble. He was a friend of Sidney though wasn’t he?

A veritable man o letters on SH’s doorstep. So where’s his recognition of Shakespeare is the logical question? I too would love to know. The Fulke Greville as author theory doesn’t thrill me. But he cannot be excluded from Shaggy’s history. Which was a Stratford and London history.

Did he travel to Europe? Sure Oxford did his grand tour as many a noble did. He hits all the right esoteric spots and people. Alan H. does hit the monstrous adversary on the nose.

Can it be that Eddy V single-handedly shapes the Renaissance power elite from within through words? Or are we all being played?

The Teletubbies may have come and gone from Stratford but Will remains. And of course Garrick’s disastrous Jubilee sparked it off. Shakespeare was then and is now a tourist industry as well as a cultural marker. The Disneyfication of the world is proof of how unreal that is.

Cold hard historical facts are scarce. Speculation based on alternative cold hard facts is abundant.

I run a blog as you may know wherein I’m not exactly flattering to the alternative Shakespeares. I have known artists and actors and write from my perspective and opinion.

But I am definitely not ignoring any lead on providing the true identity of all our quests, Shakespeare. If I can read the sources I will. My German is functionally OK when spoken, and lyrically perfectionist when sung to Schubert or Mozart’s lieder.

I disagree with the Alternative seekers way of presenting history and/or History. It goes against established methodologies, which as we know change with time. Re: theory and criticism have provided their own mind numbing take on Shakespeare despite who wrote it.

I’m all for questioning authority and thinking outside the box. And I salute genius and sublimity. Mark Rylance and Derek Jacobi rock as interpreters of Sh. But they are few among the many who can and do. few of whom agree with you or them.

Your historical method is always personal and psychological towards Oxford. Events are tied together by threads and strands quite disparate. And then knotted together as a final argument in support.

When we both know a little questioning on your conclusions within any given argument and we’re into dunno, could never know land. In that I am as guilty. By this admission.

However the historical record for a fleshed out Shakespeare as the man from Stratford has never been achieved either. The man is simply a mirror into all our souls.

So the dichotomy often thrown out upon observing the reflection: is he low-born or noble. Hence the snobbery label, if you choose the latter. And if you’re an Oxfordian how could not be a little class oriented?

But to deny the lower classes any humanity, except that of willing dupe. Curses man, you offend his friends. In your world neither Shakespeare had true friends except their own genius. The one for fobbing off and the other for being fobbed.

My father was a gamekeeper on a few estates and I observed him doffing the hat as a child. The absolutism of power and privilige stayed with me as an impression.

And at the same time because of Oxenforde’s position, rather station. It must be he. Where was he during the theatre world of the 1570’s and 1580’s on into the 90’s?

He had his own group of boys we know. He wrote comedies and juvenile poetry we know. We have his letters covering 40 years of his life. How come we haven’t recognised his right to the title of Bard through them?

Instead conspiratorial Inner circle aristocracy that was heavily played by his guardian and monarch. Power none, lands confiscated for the crown revenues, until coming of age. A fortune squandered as an adult. Shunned for the post he wanted during the Armada.

These things all make him likeable as a bastard freak aristocratic artist busting Elizabethan cojones. Revenge in the form of plays splaying the principals of that time’s history for the cognoscenti on the public stage. It’s almost New Historicist.

The impact of Authorship studies as a meme is taking shape. But that doesn’t make it true. If a meme can be said to have a true/false dichotomy.

I appreciate the amount of reading and study that you and others like you are expending defending your 1 of a hundred choice of candidate. You turn up evidence of the EME as much as any university researcher. And in fact your name is becoming a footnote to many a young PhD’s essay. At the appropriate academic institutions.

Both Oxford and Shakespear are important to the study of Early Modern Theatre history. Neither is capable of upending accepted Elizabethan history. Especially with the TP2 theory. Which I enjoy watching you all take positions on.

Talk about a revolution that ain’t gonna happen. Nevertheless keep fleshing out your guy and working on those cool apps (the Google map rocks)!

TP2 theory is the Tudor Prince 2 theory that Elizabeth squired Oxford then with him squired the Earl of Southampton. Kooky and kinky!

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