The Complete Works of William Shakespeare is a text often seen as a great asset to anybody's
bookshelf: in this case it has been carried in and out of classrooms for 25 years and read cover to
cover over that period as well.
The plays cover a wide range of emotions and genres: for example:
The Tragedies: Comedies and Romances merge to create a fine listing of excellent plays:
There is an added GLOSSARY which is a great help to the teacher and student at the back of the Alexander Text:
Shakespeare's plays and poems have been part of my curriculum since childhood right through my adult life into my work now as a full time writer: I recall that the all time favourite at my Convent School in Ireland was
Julius Caesar! How I learned the lines like a true trooper ready to take up my career at only ten years of age on the professional stage: in fact, it made such an impact on my Headmistress at that time, that she also included: The Merchant of Venice: I diligently studied this text, like the scholar of English Prose and Poetry I was later to become: little did I realise that at that time of my formative education
Shakespeare was to become my No1 Author not only in life but in poetry!
I presumably would have to add that I have taken the Complete Works of Shakespeare with me all over the world, as I have taught and worked on the International scene most of my career, and indeed, I hope to continue furthering the cause of Drama and Art!
Again, if invited to give a talk on my favourite play in the Shakespearian Canon, I probably now would choose;
the theme in that play is /old age/ a current obsession here in the UK and in Europe. I have recently visited the United States of America and note they while they have an excellent theatre life - there is an absence of the Bard's work! I assume that's because its quintessentially /English/ nature escapes our American culture cousins programme.
I would recommend the readings of these plays as follows:
In the Park
At School and College
On the Stage
There have been many occasions when, however, I have had to go to my room, and pick up
/The Complete Works of Shakespeare/Alexander Text and thumb through the pages to search out a quote such as you hear time and time again on the local Radio!
My favourite quote at my Convent School was
/the quality of mercy is not strained/
They used to say, it meant - dont force yourself to do what is not possible - work with the possible!
I did, I attained a FIRST in Shakespearian studies in Drama and English when I studied as an undergraduate at College in England! In those far off childhood days at my Covent School,
who would have thought it! Certainly! not me, but probably my Headmistress would have come up with the right answers had she been willing to comment at that time - in the period of 1955-1956:
Later I was to meet her and I had just completed another course in Literature at an Irish University - she was full of praise and thanksgiving! As I said at that time:
/it's all down to Shakespeare being taught at Convent School in Ireland/
The Complete Works of Shakespeare (The Alexander Text) is one of my favourite books! I recommend it to the readership!