A Slight Setback and Totalitarian Autonomy: Wednesday 1st February

The day didn’t get off to the best of starts, as I found out that I had been unsuccessful in my application for a grant from the Japanese Society of the Promotion of Science (JSPS), which I planned to use to continue my research into the relationship between theatre and scientific communication. I felt that we had put together a very good proposal, but allegedly there were almost a thousand applicants, with only a 10% success rate, and our proposal was up against far more traditional scientific research. Still, I shall not be deterred, as I am convinced that this is a fascinating area for investigation, and one that I have already seen is capable of producing tangible and impressive results. In the words of Seneca:  ‘It is a rough road that leads to the heights of greatness.’

Obviously the world is still not ready for this…

Today the director decided that he would let the cast try out a number of different alternatives for the scene in ‘Hamlet’ which heralds the arrival of Fortinbras and his army. This resulted in a number of proposals, ranging from the interesting: Fortinbras as a woman, to the truly bizarre: Fortinbras as a wounded soldier forced into manoeuvring about the stage in a wheelchair. After a couple of hours and numerous permutations we were still no nearer to a decision, and so the director settled on his original suggestion. After all, democracy is all well and good in practice, but what every actor truly craves is totalitarian autonomy!


About truehamlet

Sam is a senior lecturer in Science Communication, who researches the different ways in which media such as poetry and film can be used to communicate science to new audiences.
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