ERIC Number: ED439419
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-Mar-3
If Words Be Made of Breath and Breath of Life: Shakespeare as CPR.
Young people need a gymnasium for the expression of their passions: Shakespeare provides it. People who do not exercise their feelings cannot develop the strength to exercise their passions, and unexercised passions can seem to atrophy. It is even more likely that unexercised and unexpressed passions leak into pathways of the body chemistry where they turn to poison and make individuals ill. The physical and psycho-physical act of speaking Shakespeare can have a therapeutic effect on the emotional health of the speaker. In "Richard III," Richard's mother, the Duchess of York, and Queen Elizabeth need lessons from the old Queen Margaret before they can suitably confront the evil personified in Richard. Margaret delivers a magnificent enumeration of her son's disastrous life. Shakespeare can be the tutor in emotional eloquence for those who exercise with the barbells of his language. A first class with students who had nothing but contempt and loathing for Shakespeare was devoted to insults. The so-called "positive" emotions--happiness, love, tenderness--tend to be given precedence in society's judgment, but if equality is not observed within the emotional realm, the so-called "negative" emotions may well stage a coup and overthrow the government. Shakespeare and Company's work with young people has shown time and again that troubled and depressed students can find themselves in Shakespeare. In the last 20 years Shakespeare and Company's education program has grown into a formidable force in the surrounding community, reaching more than 40,000 students and teachers in the northeast United States every year with performances. (NKA)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A