Tag Archives: speculative fiction

Joss Whedon is a Modern-Day Shakespeare

shakespeare shadesMany people are familiar with the writer and director Joss Whedon.  And most of you have (hopefully) heard of poet and playwright William Shakespeare.  He is widely considered the greatest writer in history.  He is certainly widely studied in schools, and generally held as the paragon of not just theatre, but all written language.  However, during his time, his work was for the masses.  Poor and uneducated people paid one penny to come stand next to the stage and see his works performed.  Although now, because of the differences in dialect between the English of our time and that of his writings, his works are associated with a highly educated class, and are certainly not considered mainstream entertainment, this was clearly not always the case.

As I was reading King Lear, a tragedy of misplaced faith and dramatic irony, I thought about how if this was considered essentially “pop culture” then and is now studied in Universities, then surely there’s a modern counterpart.  It seems weird to think like this, but imagine high schoolers in 400 years dutifully opening a copy of a work from our century.  It would likely seem as strange to them as Shakespeare does to us, yet they would continue to study it because of its value which transcends time period.  Based on this, it is fun to think today about what works from today might fit that category.  It is tempting to consider more “literary” works of today, but remember that Shakespeare was not considered “high-class” or “inaccessible” in his time.

Based on this, I have thought about Joss Whedon as a modern-day Shakespeare.


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Teen Review: The Year of the Flood

The Year of the FloodTitle:  The Year of the Flood

Author:  Margaret Atwood

Summary:  The times and species have been changing at a rapid rate, and the social compact is wearing as thin as environmental stability.  Adam One, the kindly leader of the God’s Gardeners–a religion devoted to the melding of science and religion, as well as the preservation of all plant and animal life–has long predicted a natural disaster that will alter Earth as we know it.  Now it has occurred, obliterating most human life.  Two women have survived: Ren, a young trapeze dancer locked inside the high-end sex club Scales and Tails, and Toby, a God’s Gardener barricaded inside a luxurious spa where many of the treatments are edible.

I started reading it because… I read the sequel to the book which is Oryx and Crake.  I wanted to know more about what happened to Snowman and how he became the man he is now.

I kept reading because…  After reading 100 pages, I realized that this book wasn’t a sequel – it was the same story told from another person’s perspective.  But, it gave me many rich details that were not mentioned in Oryx and Crake about Snowman and Crake.  For that reason, I kept reading it.

Main character(s): If they were in a yearbook, they would be voted Most Likely To…
Snowman as Hermit,
Crake as the Brains,
Toby as Prom Queen, and
Ren the Eccentric.
Six Word Review:  Civilization has collapsed thanks to Crake.
This book reminded me of  Oryx and Crake because both books were building up to the horrific event that wipes out humans.
Endrias, Lake City Teen Blogger