Shakespeare controversy: Why I need to be a Stratfordian against all odds.


A recent visit to the Pupop Globe in Sydney revived my interest in the sheer genius playwright: William Shakespeare. And in pursuing that interest I only just recently became aware of the so-called Shakespeare authorship question or controversy.

An ongoing debat on who wrote Shakespeare. The man from Stratford-upon-Avon or someone else. Someone smarter, someone more erudite, someone more educated. Not that one of my English teachers ever bothered to point out that many a question had been raised about the authorship . I guess they were Stratfordians, firm believers in the  son of illiterate parents.

Surely they couldn’t have been Anti-Stratfordians, Baconians, Oxfordians, or any other ian, or they would at least have raised the Shakespeare authorship question as an afterthought.

Fairly new to that question I have already come to believe that the Oxfordians make a most compelling case. Although there remains a lot to be said for Bacon and Christopher Marlowe  as well as possible authorship candidates. A smart Stratfordian  should at the very least admit that William Shakespeare must have had a few collaborators with whom he wrote so many wonderful things, collaborators that nurtured his talent. Connoisseurs that recognized William Shakespeare had what it took to become larger than life. Maybe even someone who understood what he dreamed up  and wrote it down .

But I’m not a smart Stratfordian. I’m just me.

And let’s face it, reflecting on the evidence, however well presented and argumented, all the Anti-Stratfordians have only one thing in common: they desperately want to prove to the world that a man from humble beginnings and little education could never have written Shakespeare. No way!  It is the backbone of their arguments. Such genius must have sprouted from the brilliant mind of someone more upper class, someone more aristocratic. At the very least someone highly educated.

And me being just me, and contrary to the evidence, I’m just gonna keep believing that the son of a glover from Stratford-upon-Avon was indeed capable beautiful things.

And maybe, looking back on things, that is the reason why my English teachers never talked about the controversy in the classroom: they just wanted us to believe that each and every one of us was capable of  extraordinary things,  no matter who we were or where we came from.