Sharp Monica

An honest voice in Italian paradise.

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Shakespeare Report: King Henry IV, Part 2

Friends, Romans, lend me your ears! I am almost done with the Shakespeare project! More than eighteen months later and after a few false starts prior to that, I am coming close to having closely read (and wherever possible, watched in tandem) every single one

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Shakespeare Report: Othello

My Shakespeare Project is nearing its final assignments. I’ve got four more plays to go now that Othello is complete: Coriolanus and King Lear, neither of which I have ever read or watched (!!! no spoilers please especially on Lear), and two history plays: Henry

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Tempus Fugit, Family Tree, Saunas, Etc.

Last week I returned from a trip to Upper Michigan, a place I hadn’t set foot in since the summer of 1992 when I was eighteen and we helped my grandma pack up her house and sell almost everything. I was working at The Gap

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Shakespeare Report: All’s Well That Ends Well

All’s Well That Ends Well is a late-phase work from 1604-1605, well toward the end of Shakespeare’s career. Queen Bess had been dead for some time; her successor, the profligate James, secure on the throne and parceling out his token and favors at considerable cost

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Shakespeare Report: Antony and Cleopatra

My salad days,When I was green in judgment, cold in blood,To say as I said then. – Cleopatra, Act I, Sc. 5 “As a great encounter between West and East as well as a great love story, Antony and Cleopatra enacts a basic pattern of

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Shakespeare Report: Pericles, Prince of Tyre

This week is the 400th anniversary of the publication of Shakespeare’s First Folio, compiled and printed by his friends seven years after his death. Thanks, Heminges and Cordell! Hard to imagine these pieces lost, literature that has given so much to the English-speaking world, on

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Shakespeare Project: Timon of Athens

Photo by Sergio García on Unsplash Timon of Athens (rhymes with “Simon”) was written by Shakespeare (whatever that means) in 1605-1606. Queen Elizabeth I had been dead and buried for years now, and her successor, James I (not a son, but a Scottish relation well

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