Smooth operator

From Guardian:Shakespeare_6

In Ben Jonson’s celebrated phrase, he was not of an age, but for all time. Universal and timeless, Shakespeare remains a mirror to every generation. Ours is no exception. Recently, to an unprecedented degree, we have seen ourselves as much through his life as in his work. The past decade has seen a festival of celebrity Shakespeare, the pop-culture bard. So, in Tom Stoppard’s witty and suggestive film, he was ‘in love’. In Stephen Greenblatt’s 2004 bestseller he became the ‘Will’ of Will in the World. In Dominic Dromgoole’s recent memoir, Will and Me: How Shakespeare Took Over My Life, he is ‘Will’ again, a fellow thespian, and by implication the perfect side-kick and mentor to the new director of London’s Globe. Last week his First Folio was auctioned at a price (£2.8m) that would not disgrace a top impressionist.

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