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Is Rejecting Shakespeare a Sign of Cultural Decline?

Anthony Furey - Postmedia Network
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April 26, 2016
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Shakespeare died 400 years ago, but his influence on language and culture remains. (The New York Times)

There is perhaps no greater evidence of Europe's cultural decline than new data on worldwide attitudes towards Shakespeare.

The survey, commissioned by the British Council for the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death, asked more than 18,000 people in 15 countries their views on the playwright and poet from Stratford-Upon-Avon.

When asked if they liked the author of Romeo & Juliet, India (89%), Mexico (88%), and Brazil (87%) were the biggest fans. He’s highly popular in Turkey (79%), South Africa (73%) and China (68%) too.

In America, often teased for being uncultured, only 63% are fans. But they’re at least higher than the big shocker: Only 59% of folks in the U.K. like Shakespeare. The numbers in France (51%) and Germany (44%) are lower still.

When asked the question from another angle, 34% of Brits said they didn't like Shakespeare, whereas the average dislike among non-U.K. countries was 19%.

Read the rest at Toronto Sun

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