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Stephen Greenblatt

But I never listen to music while I'm writing.

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No special writing rituals. And my desk is usually cluttered.

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The Shakespeare that Shakespeare became is the name that's attached to these astonishing objects that he left behind.

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What we know is that Shakespeare wrote perhaps the most remarkable body of passionate love poetry in the English language to a young man.

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First of all, Shakespeare is about pleasure and interest. He was from the first moment he actually wrote something for the stage, and he remains so.

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I believe that nothing comes of nothing, even in Shakespeare. I wanted to know where he got the matter he was working with and what he did with that matter.

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What I wanted to do was to get that sense of being in touch with this lost world while holding onto what draws readers and audiences there in the first place.

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I wanted to hold onto and exploit the power of narrative. This is not only a book about a great storyteller, but there have to be stories about the storyteller.

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I think the writing of literature should give pleasure. What else should it be about? It is not nuclear physics. It actually has to give pleasure or it is worth nothing.

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Now a Protestant confronting a Catholic ghost is exactly Shakespeare's way of grappling with what was not simply a general social problem but one lived out in his own life.

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