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IS NOT THE TRUTH THE TRUTH? SHAKESPEARE VS ALTERNATIVE FACTS

Saturday 21 October: 11:00am - 11:45am

Faculty of English, GR06/07, 9 West Road, CB3 9DP

The crux of the power of post-fact—a dangerous slippage between “seeming” and “being” true and an inability to perceive “truth”—is age old. It haunts contemporary politics, it preoccupied Shakespeare and his contemporaries and, relatedly, it was the province of classical rhetoricians. In Shakespeare’s Europe, as in the classical world, rhetorical mastery was what made for a persuasive case at law, and a believable story on stage or in print. These skills were, and are still, used at law, in literature, and in politics but people’s awareness of rhetoric and linguistic skill has deteriorated, as has engagement with and education in history.
In this session Dr Rachel E. Holmes from the Faculty of English looks to engage with our rhetorical awareness, or lack thereof, and to see whether we recognise rhetorical effects and their broader implications in literature and culture. Humanities scholars and teachers of all ilks have a responsibility to educate students, and one another, to seek out and think critically about conflicting sources. These are crucial skills moving forward as we negotiate the dangers of “fake news” and “alternative facts”, so why not start with Shakespeare?

Booking Information

Telephone number:
01223 766766

Booking required

Accessibility

Step-free access

Additional Information

Age: 12+, Talk, Arrive on time, free

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