Review: Love’s Labor’s Lost

Love's Labor's Lost Love’s Labor’s Lost by William Shakespeare
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

From women’s eyes this doctrine I derive:
They sparkle still the right Promethean fire;
They are the books, the arts, the academes,
That show, contain and nourish all the world.

I saw this at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival on Oct. 11th. I only had time to start reading before going to see it. Not one of my favorites, but I really enjoyed it. It will be interesting to compare it to As You Like It which I’m planning to see next year.

From the playbill:

“…Shakespeare takes the common elements of a romantic comedy, tosses them into an enclave in the woods, and sends the typical constraints of a well-behaved society packing in order to make a play where the characters transform themselves by inventing their own rules — and then change again and again with more and different rules, in increasingly fantastical, wonderful, whimsical, maddening ways.

Moreover, this is a play that knows it’s a play. That, in itself, does not make it unique — Shakespeare often uses the theatre as a metaphor for life — but in Love’s Labor’s he is especially interested in the smallest bits of what makes up a play: words. Words rhyming, words meaning two things at once, romantic words set down on paper, and sharp-witted words launched in volleys like arrows. The playwright plays with his writing, and all that wordplay creates this giddy, fantastical realm — a gorgeous paper castle that stands in stark relief against the plain language of reality. It is only at the very end of Love’s Labor’s Lost that we learn the real reason for that third part of the title: Lost.

Love’s Labor’s Lost is too many things to count. The most important thing it is, to me, happens in the last ten minutes… It tells a truth about who we are in our youth, in our middle age, in our dotage, in our ending.”

View all my reviews

Published by Beth @ Beth's Bookish Thoughts

This blog is for my thoughts on reading. A couple of my friends on GoodReads have blogs, so eventually I decided to start one myself. I hope to get involved in the book blogging community and become a better reader and writer! I am not accepting copies of new books for review, but I would be interested in new editions or new translations of classic authors. Find me on Upwork (as an editor) in the profile link. From September 2018 to October 2020 I blogged at Blogger.

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