Graham Herrli's Reviews > As You Like It

As You Like It by William Shakespeare
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Apr 09, 2011

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bookshelves: plays
Read in April, 2011

The gender reversals in the play were highly amusing, especially when you consider that in the original performances of the play all of the actors were male. Thus, a male actor plays the female Rosalind who disguises herself as the male Ganymede who pretends to be Rosalind (which in fact (s)he is) and then proceeds to pronounce mock-solemn judgment on the nature of gender relations.

Had Shakespeare stuck to the the relations above, the play might have merited five stars. But in the final scene, the play fell apart. The appearance of the god Hymen was superfluous and could easily have been eliminated, while the sudden religious enlightenment of Duke Frederick was wholly unprecedented: even more of a deus ex machina than the appearance of the deus himself.
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