In 1997, Stephen Greenblatt observed in his introduction to The Norton Shakespeare: “The fantastic diffusion and long life of Shakespeare’s works depends on their extraordinary malleability”. Two years later, Christy Desmet and Robert Sawyer published in many ways a seminal essay collection Shakespeare and Appropriation that developed the theoretical propositions made by Jean I. Marsden in her The Appropriation of Shakespeare: The Works and the Myth (1991). Appropriation has been theorized, developed and exemplified on an impressive range of works across many cultures. In recent years, the concept has been also critiqued, modified and refined in an attempt at moving away from its original hegemonic sense as “an act of seizure” to a more complex model where “both Shakespeare and its appropriations can be the actors and the acted upon, the self and the other, sometimes in the space of a single creative act”. These recent developments, most importantly summarised in Alexa Huang and Elizabeth Rivlin’s collection Shakespeare and the Ethics of Appropriation (2014), move beyond issues of fidelity, simple binary models of source-appropriation or questions of citation and quotation. In this context, Douglas Lanier asks radically: “How then to reconceptualize Shakespearean adaptation post-fidelity?”. This essay contributes to this discussion and offers a possible reconceptualization of works derived from Shakespeare in the broadest sense of the word – from translations, through adaptations, to real-time manifestations of the Shakespearean myth.
Drábek, P. (2018). Shakespeare’s myriad-minded stage as a transnational forum : Openness and plurality in drama translation. Shakespeare Studies -Columbia then Albuquerque-, 46, 35-47