Yay! I finally finished grading for the second summer session classes I taught at the Muhlenberg College School of Continuing Education in Allentown, PA. I had two courses in the second summer session: Literature and Film and Renaissance Plays In Process, and both courses had a full enrollment.
I had a wonderful time teaching these classes, and of course, I had much to grade at the end. That leads to a question–who is the person who assigns these papers anyway? Hmmm . . .
And now it is time to finish syllabi for the Fall semester which begins in one week!
And I can also return to writing. I had to take a few days off to complete my schoolwork.
“If you don’t know history, then you don’t know anything. You are a leaf that doesn’t know it is part of a tree. ”
“One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we’ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It’s simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.”
“Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.”
“We should and must judge our leaders by their knowledge of history.”
Charles F. French
Hello to all the writers out there and reading this blog!
It is well into the month of August, so it is time for a shameless self-promotion party, so please do not be shy about your work.
Writers need to be their own best publicists, and we should also help each other!
Let the world know about your book(s)!
Shout to the world about your writing!
Tell us about your book(s), and leave an image and a link if you can.
In order for as many people to see your work as possible, please Tweet, and reblog this post!
Please remember to be proud of your work!
Here is my shameless self-promotion: my latest book can help writers who have issues with finishing first drafts of their books. If that is you, I offer direct, practical advice on how to Get The Draft Done! Helping Writers Finish Their First Draft by Charles F. French.
Get The Draft Done! is available here: Amazon.com
Please follow the following links to find my novel:
The book trailer:
My radio interview:
The drawing of the Swan Theatre (1596)
Hamlet, Doctor Faustus, The Tempest, and Edward the Second are just a few of the plays produced by the two greatest playwrights of the Renaissance: William Shakespeare and Christopher Marlowe. Born in the same year–1564, they were the two premier writers of their age and arguably among the most important of any era. These are writers who have informed both my studies and entranced my imagination. At Muhlenberg College, I teach Renaissance drama courses and Shakespeare . This summer I am teaching a course called Renaissance Plays In Process, in which we look at several plays and the circumstances surrounding them in the Renaissance as well as how they might be produced today. Whenever I can, I love teaching about these playwrights.
I would love to have the opportunity through a magic time machine to sit down and have a conversation with these two giants of the theater. I would invite both writers to spend an afternoon or evening at a pub–English of course–and over beer and food discuss many topics with them. I am sure that sometimes I would simply listen to them.
I would love to hear what they said about their work and how they felt about each other. I would love to learn from them the specifics of the way their plays were staged. I would ask Marlowe about his mysterious work for the Queen of England. Was he a spy? I do not know if he would answer, but I would still have to ask.
I would ask Shakespeare about the canon of his plays. Were there plays he wrote that are currently lost? If so, what are they? And I have often wondered if he ever considered writing a tragedy about King Arthur.
I also wonder how the two great writers would behave together. Would this be a polite conversation, a deep discussion of theatrical issues, or a wild and fiery debate or argument among bitter rivals?
I wish I could speak with them.
If you could speak with 2 or 3 authors, no matter living or dead, who would they be? Where would you like to have the meeting?
Some books speak to a specific time, and some reach across eras with their messages. Some include a message for a definite audience, while others span a more general readership. And some times call out for certain books to be read.
Books are one form of the Media, which must remain free if freedom itself is to survive. Given the turmoil of our present time, I am suggesting these books as crucial reading for today’s world:
It Can’t Happen Here
I have offered three books I consider to be essential for our times.
What books or books do you think are needed now?
“The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.”
As You Like It
“ And seeing ignorance is the curse of God, Knowledge the wing wherewith we fly to heaven”
Henry VI, Part 2
“There is no darkness but ignorance”
“There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that ‘my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.”
“The saddest aspect of life right now is that science gathers knowledge faster than society gathers wisdom.”
“The easiest way to solve a problem is to deny it exists.”
The United States of America lost an heroic figure with the passing of Representative John Lewis on Friday from pancreatic cancer. (1940-2020)
Mr. Lewis was a major figure in the Civil Rights Movement and worked alongside Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. He participated, in the March on Washington, and he led the march, as a young man, across the Edmund Pettis Bridge in Selma, Alabama on March 7, 1965. This would come to be known as Bloody Sunday because of the violence the marchers encountered, including Mr. Lewis.
He would later be elected to the United States House of Representatives in which he served for 30 years; he was frequently considered to be the Conscience of America. He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Obama in 2011.
Among Mr. Lewis’ quotations are “When you see something that is not right, not fair, not just, you have to speak up. You have to say something, you have to do something.” and “I’m very hopeful. I am very optimistic about the future.” and “Get in good trouble, necessary trouble, and help redeem the soul of America.”
Mr. John Lewis was a tireless fighter for justice and against injustice. He will be missed.
Rest In Peace