Much ado about something: Celebrating Shakespeare's 450th birthday

Apr 22, 2014
Linda Tatelbaum will lead a discussion on Shakespeare at the May 7 Union Historical Society meeting.

Union — Union Historical Society will meet Wednesday, May 7, at 7:30 p.m. at the Old Town House, Town House Road, just off Union Common.

Appleton author Linda Tatelbaum, Professor Emerita of English and environmental studies at Colby College, will give a talk on the English-speaking world’s most famous dramatist, William Shakespeare, born in April 1564.

Tatelbaum will discuss what was going on in Maine at the time of Shakespeare’s birth, and will explore ideas he might have focused on, had he been born in Maine. She wonders if it matters that the facts about him are still contested, and will probably never be known, given that his subjects of power, family, love, and nature are still relevant. Tatelbaum suggests that "The Tempest" is a drama whose theme is very relevant to Maine: how do newcomers view natives. She asks, “What do the shipwrecked characters “from away” think of Caliban, the native of the island? The difference in their language usage is key to their difference as people. How might this still be true in Maine?” Tatelbaum will illustrate her talk with readings from Shakespeare’s plays and sonnets.

Born in Rochester, N.Y. in 1947, Linda Tatelbaum lives in Appleton with her husband; they have a grown son, Noah. A Ph.D. from Cornell University, she left academia to become a back-to-the-land homesteader in 1977, and returned to college teaching once the solar house and organic garden were up and running. She recently published "Woman Who Speaks Tree: confessions of a tree hugger." Her other books are the nonfiction "Carrying Water as a Way of Life: A Homesteader’s History" and "Writer on the Rocks­ moving the impossible," and the novel "Yes & No: Paris 1969."

After the meeting refreshments will be served by hosts Marilyn Leiviski and Vera Northrup. All meetings of Union Historical Society are free and open to the public. For more information, call 785-5444 and leave a message.

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