Germaine Greer: [recast; carry out; nonsensical; end up; Mafioso;alleyway; tax; call sth into question; dramatise; EastEnders] And 400 years is not very long. It's a blink in the history of the world. And what actually happens in a Shakespeare play is you are prevented from arriving at easy certainties. Every thing you think you understand is challenged. So, you have to recast your own ideas. People start off thinking, for example, about Hamlet, that Hamlet's duty is to carry out revenge on a death of his father. That's a nonsensical idea. We have justice in order to keep us free from revenge which will end us up in a kind of Mafioso situation with blood in every alleyway. It's altoge
ther more taxing and intelligent and questing, Shakespeare isn't a representative of the ruling class. He exists to call into question all our certainties, and this is what makes them, the plays, work, because everything keeps shifting. It's not a question of dramatising a narrative that when you've got hold the narrative, you've understood the story. He is not writing scripts for EastEnders or neighbours. He is actually making you think. The only thing he wants you to do is to think. He doesn't tell you what to think; he tells you that you must think.
a member of the Mafia;
a secret organization of criminals, that is active especially in Sicily, Italy and the US.
1. to need a great amount of physical or mental effort;