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ERIC Number: EJ816218
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Jul
Pages: 12
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 4
ISSN: ISSN-1474-8460
Shakespeare on Wisdom
Nordstrom, Alan
London Review of Education, v5 n2 p185-196 Jul 2007
In universities and elsewhere, might we study Shakespeare to learn about wisdom and how to grow wiser? Assuming with Nicholas Maxwell that wisdom is the capacity to realize what is of value in life, for oneself and others, then I say yes. The testimony is long and strong that being wise goes against our grain, and that even if we can agree that this or that decision produces the most value, we may still fail to execute it well and faithfully. Though I wish things otherwise and hope for better, I still must register this long-respected "wisdom" of our master bard in finding us committed more to folly than its opposite. But what about wisdom, folly's opposite--does Shakespeare show us that and give us any clues about living wisely? Though he's never didactic, can we nonetheless deduce from his writing whether we mortals have any hope of escaping our innate proclivity to foolish error and of following a path toward wisdom? I think so, if only in flashes and glimpses easily missed by those with no eyes to see nor ears to hear. In each of his plays elements of wisdom may be detected, often ironically in those characters who appear most foolish. (Contains 1 note.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A