Feminist, Fictionista, Foodie, Francophile

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Everything old is new again--Shakespeare and the supernatural

Every so often I think about how lucky we are that we have the wisdom of the ages at our fingertips. when I was a kid, my parents bought us a set of encyclopedias one volume at a time from the supermarket. These days, I have almost two thousand books in my kindle, and access to a bazillion more at the click of a mouse. And of course, there's Wikipedia. that day Wikipedia went dark in protest of possible changes to the Internet, I ... did not fare well.

If I were writing a term paper on any facet of Shakespeare now, I'd never have to leave my bedroom. Books that I would have had to request through inter-library collections are available just for the asking, many of them free and many of them the kinds of books that would have been housed in the rare books collection of any college library back in the day. For example, there's T. F. Thiselton Dyer's Folk-lore of Shakespeare, which was published in 1883 is available to download for less than $5 and if you type in various queries, the specific answer will, more often than not, show up in Google Books. The answer may not be the exact answer you want--i queried "mermaids in Shakespeare" and got a quote about Shakespeare and fishing, which made me think of my own story," Wild-Caught."

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