Shakespeare's Adaptability

Organized by
The Department of English Literature, School of English,
Aristotle University of Thessaloniki,
in cooperation with the British Council in Greece
26 May 2003
Venue: Thessaloniki Centre for Historical Research

Click here to see Programme of talks

The Symposium will focus on the question: What is it that makes (or does not make) Shakespeare particularly adaptable and appropriable in various cultures, stages and teaching situations?

In the last four centuries Shakespeare's plays have been read and staged in different cultures and various historical circumstances. They have been translated into many languages and, in the last century, projected on the big and the small screen. They have been studied by researchers, who produce yearly an enormous amount of critical material round the world. They have been used as a source of pleasure and study, but also as a means of validating ideologies and aesthetic values, old or new. In our days they serve as rich sites for the exploration of cultural identity, power structures, and other complex issues, like gender, race, class and ethnicity. In all these instances Shakespeare is never the same but always changing, evolving with the times. Even his textual body changes, as revised views of authenticity bring forth new texts of his plays. Shakespeare, in other words, turns out to be amazingly malleable and adaptable to the needs of changing societies. Why does this happen, or where does it not happen?

The Symposium is open to students, teachers, and other interested members of the academic and theatrical communities. Attendance will be free of charge.


The Ministry of Culture
The British Council
The Research Committee of Aristotle University
The Rector’s Office of Aristotle University
The Cultural Office of the Municipality of Thessaloniki

For more information please contact
Tina Krontiris, Aristotle University
Tel.: + (2310) 997133
Fax: + (2310) 997432, e-mail: