Virtuous Evildoers

At the end of Shakespeare’s play Julius Caesar, Brutus and ­Cassius, the conspirators who had assassinated Caesar, are themselves dead. Brutus has, in fact, fallen upon his sword rather than face capture by the armies of Octavius and Mark Antony. Brutus was bad enough to betray and murder a . . . . Continue Reading »

The Tragedy of the Republic

We French have for some years been overcome by a furor for republicanism and for citizenship. There is no activity so humble that it cannot take on an intimidating nobility as soon as it is associated with citizenship. The republic calls us, besieges us, smothers us—but where is the republic? Are . . . . Continue Reading »

What We've Been Reading—12.9.16

I've been immersed in Shakespeare's King Lear, but not solely as a text on a page. I'm acting in a production of the play here in New York City, playing the King of France and the Servant who stands up to Cornwall in the famous eye-gouging scene. Continue Reading »

Hazarding All

The play begins and ends in the romantic world of magical, musical, moonlit Belmont, and in between descends into the gritty business of Venice. From the start, though, romantic and commercial concerns are linked. Continue Reading »