John J. Joughin
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Shakespeare’s genius
Hamlet, adaptation and the work of following

The survival of William Shakespeare's plays continues to demonstrate that literature means different things to different people in different contexts. During the course of Hamlet, the attempted adaptation might be cast as an act of narration in which Hamlet the proto-intellectual will clarify the act of sovereign succession and rewrite the official history. Theatrical adaptation is arguably 'less constrained' than other modes of interpretation. The act of inheritance or witness, the aesthetic contract by which Hamlet and humanism seem bound, actually remarks nothing more or less than the inaugural aporia of intellectual life. Heiddeger's remarks on 'The origin of the work of art' offer us a more 'generalised thinking of the Kantian notion of genius', and in doing so help tease out the historical implications of exemplary artworks.

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