As we come closer and closer to the end of this semester, with just one more month to go, it’s nice to look back at some of our discussions. This past weekend was, interestingly enough, extremely relevant to our class discussions, since it was both Earth Day on Saturday and Shakespeare’s birthday on Sunday.
(Photo of the Earth taken from nasa.gov; photo of Shakespeare taken from oxbridgefutureleaders.com)
According to the Earth Day website:
April 22nd marks national Earth Day, which dates back to 1970, as “the birth of the modern environmental movement.”
After seeing the harmful effects of a massive oil spill in Santa Barbara, California in 1969, Gaylord Nelson, a U.S. Senator from Wisconsin at that time, decided to incorporate a day that emphasizes the importance of protecting the environment. This became known as Earth Day. Earth Day is a day to bring awareness to environmental care, as well as to celebrate the planet that unites all people, all animals, and and the wholeness of our world.
(Senator Nelson speaking of environmental change, 1970; photo taken from wisconsinhistory.org)
In short, since April 22nd, 1970, environmental associations in conjunction with the Earth Day initiative have led citizens to the awareness of “oil spills, polluting factories and power plants, raw sewage, toxic dumps, pesticides, freeways, the loss of wilderness, and the extinction of wildlife.” Beyond this, upon entering the new millennium, Earth Day representatives have also pushed for awareness of global warming and clean energy. This movement in environmentalism has opened up the United States Environmental Protection Agency, the Clean Air, Clean Water and Endangered Species Acts, and has emphasized the importance of protecting trees and forests. As of today, more than 192/206 countries observe Earth Day.
(This comic pic of Shakespeare is taken from momfluential.net)
Following the celebration of Earth Day, April 23rd is traditionally regarded as Shakespeare’s Day. Although little is known about the great poet and playwright William Shakespeare, April 23rd is regarded as the date of both his birth and his death. While April 26th is regarded as Shakespeare’s baptismal day, April 23rd remains the celebrated day of Shakespeare’s life. Shakespeare is accredited with some of the best works of the English language and of literature for all time. Shakespeare lived from 1564-1616, and, according to research, died on his 52nd birthday, during his retirement. Sunday, April 23rd, 2017 marked the 453rd birthday of William Shakespeare.
(This is a picture of a cake made for the 450th birthday competition held in London in 2014, a competition called Cakespeare; this first photo is taken from Pinterest. The second is a picture of Jane Asher’s cake for the competition; this photo is taken from the Time Out London blog.)
Works accredited to William Shakespeare:
All’s Well That Ends Well, As You Like It, Cymbeline, The Comedy of Errors, Love’s Labour’s Lost, Measure for Measure, The Merchant of Venice, The Merry Wives of Windsor, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Much Ado About Nothing, Pericles, The Taming of the Shrew, The Tempest, Troilus and Cressida, The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Twelfth Night, The Winter’s Tale
Antony and Cleopatra, Coriolanus, Hamlet, Julius Caesar, King Lear, Macbeth, Othello, Romeo and Juliet, Timon of Athens, Titus Andronicus
1,2, and 3 Henry VI, 1 and 2 Henry IV, King John, Henry V, Henry VIII, Richard II, Richard III
(This list has been made by Amanda Mabillard.)
For information on Earth Day:
For information on Shakespeare:
Mabillard, Amanda. How Many Plays Did Shakespeare Write?. Shakespeare Online. 20 Aug. 2000. < http://www.shakespeare-online.com/plays/numberofplays.html >.