Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Back in Action

I finally stopped home after the first leg of the tour, and a really fun lecture series I gave on Shakespearean locations in the Mediterranean (and Aegean) for Harvard. It was really wonderful to discuss the plays while on a ship headed to the very places we were discussing. The company was also very stimulating - a very broad range of accomplished people in very diverse fields.

I started by discussing Shakespeare's language and biography, with an emphasis on violence in his day. My second lecture was a Jungian analysis of Othello, the third a talk about Orson Welles's Othello, and I wrapped it up by looking at Romeo & Juliet in popular culture, from West Side Story to Dire Straits.

What was so interesting for me, in revisiting this field that I last studied formally about ten years ago, was all the ways in which my study of literature - and Shakespeare in particular - influenced my writing. It's very indirect of course, but plugging into some of these narratives again gave me a really fresh perspective on how I came to writing and some of the themes I've chosen.

I have a few more tour stops (San Diego, Orange, Milwaukee, Florida, Oakland) but am now home for the most part, getting ready to dig into something new.

1 comment:

SPB said...

good blog ya got goin here. discovered your stuff recently and became a fan. funny that you mention romeo and juliet & west side story & dire straits as part of your lecture series--i just watched WSS again on TCM the other night and was considering the ways in which the characters mirrored the ones in the Shakespeare play, particularly Anita and Doc (?)...and then I put DR's "Romeo and Juliet" on an 80s mix that i talked about over at my blog.

anyway, rambling now...from one Ivy League (soon-to-be) thriller writer to another...best to you and keep up the good fun work, bro...