Robin Lithgow’s “Good Behavior and Audacity”November 30, 2019
My dear and brilliant friend Robin Lithgow has written a fascinating, well-researched book about education systems and Shakespeare titled Good Behavior and Audacity. In it, she writes about coming across Colloquia Familiaria by Erasmus. This is from her recent blog:
“When I started reading, I was astonished to find early models of the colloquial characters that I loved as a kid watching Shakespeare’s plays: the clowns, shopkeepers, thieves, schoolmasters, bar flies, prostitutes, etc. These were short scripts written forty years before Shakespeare was born, for schoolboys, to teach conversational Latin! … To me it is glaringly obvious that, as a boy, Will Shakespeare performed them at school. Characters, circumstances, even specific images and lines show up all over his early comedies….Something else that amazed me were all of the whip-smart women characters that Erasmus created! Shakespeare is often noted for his luminous and opinionated women, often outsmarting and out-talking the men around them. Hello!? Erasmus’ women were doing that long before Shakespeare!” – Robin Lithgow
So in October, in an informal salon setting, I read one of these whip-smart women in a colloquia with Robin’s brother, John Lithgow. Enjoy! And for more, sign up for Robin’s blog here.