By T. Mack
Aaaaaaaaaahhhhhh!!! My head hurts. My heart hurts. My English major brain hurts. A part of me has just died! I desperately want to jump into the Doctor’s TARDIS and travel back in time to give The Bard a hug and apologize for my culture and its heinous murder of his legacy.
America’s youth are dumb, apparently. In an effort to embrace and enable their stupidity, Penguin Random House has released a series of books called OMG Shakespeare. These books have butchered the classic masterpieces of The Bard by turning them into textspeak, complete with excessive emoji. The series includes the titles YOLO Juliet, srsly Hamlet, A Midsummer Night #nofilter and Macbeth #killingit.
UGH! Seriously, I just threw up a little in my mouth from having to type that nonsense!
Take a look at this excerpt from YOLO Juliet:
I. CAN’T. EVEN.
I mean… WHAT THE F***?!
My outrage knows no bounds. It is INSANE that we are now destroying classic literature so that youth do not have to think. Isn’t the idea to expose them to classic literature so they may learn to think better? WHAT IS HAPPENING?!?!
Please don’t misunderstand me. I know that it is difficult for young people to learn from these texts if they are unable to understand them. That’s why I fully support the material being taught in schools so that students may learn how to understand and interpret it. I also see the benefit in versions of the text that split the page, showing the original verse on one side and a more modern interpretation on the other. In the case of those books, the reader is still exposed to the old English and learn the correlation of that to our modern speech. It is learning! But these new books are an entirely new level of horrible. Not only have they completely removed the verse, but they’ve also done away with our modern speech and removed all nuance of the language and poetry of the material. They have taken the beautiful poetry of Shakespeare’s plays and turned them into something that is only a step or two above the gruntings of neanderthals.
I am truly heartbroken by this new development in the de-evolution of our language and our learning. I have to go. I’m going to find a quiet corner to sit and shed tears on the pages of my collection of The Complete Works of William Shakespeare.