Light & Verity

May the Force be with thee

Shakespeare meets Star Wars.

It is a period of civil war.
The spaceships of the rebels, striking swift
From base unseen, have gain’d a vict’ry o’er
The cruel Galactic Empire, now adrift.
Amidst the battle, Rebel spies prevail’d
And stole the plans to a space station vast,
Whose pow’rful beams will later be unveil’d
And crush a planet: ’tis the Death Star blast.

Michael Sloan

Michael Sloan

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Sure, Star Wars was moderately successful, but you know what would have made it a real hit? Iambic pentameter. Okay, maybe not, but Ian Doescher ’99, ’05MDiv, decided to give it a try anyway. His new book, William Shakespeare’s Star Wars, is a treatment of the original movie as a five-act Shakespearean play. Published by Quirk Books, which also gave us such literary mashups as Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and Android Karenina, the book is peppered with references to other works by the Bard. (The beginning of the prologue is reproduced above.) Doescher, the creative director for a marketing agency in Portland, Oregon, turned to Yale English and theater studies professor Murray Biggs for help getting the vocabulary and idiom right. “Ian has an uncanny feel for the Shakespearean line,” says Biggs.

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