how did shakespeare change the world?Can someone help me expand on these topics? His role in the renaissance How he influenced the English language The way he changed the way people think / speak...

how did shakespeare change the world?

Can someone help me expand on these topics?

His role in the renaissance

How he influenced the English language

The way he changed the way people think / speak

How his work (such as his plays) changed the theatre

Can someone help me expand on these topics?

His role in the renaissance

How he influenced the English language

The way he changed the way people think / speak

How his work (such as his plays) changed the theatre

and how all of these topics helped change the world altogether

thanks so much for your help :)

Asked on by kkcyclone

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thanatassa's profile pic

thanatassa | College Teacher | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

First, I am not sure one can legitimately claim that Shakespeare "changed the world." There are very few people of whom that could realistically be said, and those would be great religious leaders such as Buddha, Muḥammad, and Jesus, rather than writers. Instead, more precisely, one should state that Shakespeare is one of the most important authors in the English literary canon, keeping in mind that English is one language and literary tradition among many.

First, one can state that Shakespeare has become a standard school text in the Anglophone world, and thus an element of our shared literary heritage. His very ubiquity makes him a touchstone for English literary culture, and many works of literature and art reference his works directly or indirectly. 

Next, he invented the character type of the quarreling lovers with Beatrice and Benedict in Much Ado About Nothing. A second important literary feature of his work is the way he mixes comic interludes with rustics in his tragedies, something that was not part of classical tragedy. 

He uses well over 1,000 words not found in earlier English works, although whether he actually coined them or whether this is an accident of preservation is not entirely certain. He did coin many phrases and metaphors which have become standard parts of the English language, including:

  • “Bated breath”
  • “Brave new world”
  • “Break the ice”
  • “Brevity is the soul of wit”
  • “Forever and a day”
  • “Good riddance” 
  • “Wild-goose chase” 
Sources:
wannam's profile pic

wannam | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted on

Shakespeare influences the world in many ways.  For one thing, he wrote his plays with the common man in mind.  He wished for the general public to be able to see and enjoy the theatre rather than just the supper rich and royalty.  He changed the way people saw the theatre and the way they thought plays should be. 

Shakespeare's influence on the English language, in part, stems from the fact that he did not spend much time in school.  Shakespeare was unable to continue attending school after what we would consider elementary school today.  He didn't have as much vocabulary as someone with more education.  Therefore, he began to invent his own words or use existing words in a totally new context.  Many common words we use today didn't exist before Shakespeare.

Sources:

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