Edited by Silvia Bigliazzi
[Shakespeare in European Culture 2] 2020
► pp. 215–243
Chapter 6. Notes on Shakespeare, simulacra, and the aporias of ‘acting’
The essay explores selected examples of theatrical and philosophical Italian responses to Shakespeare in relation to a diffused sense of crisis of representation, entailing a crisis of the subject, from the early 1980s to 2016. It investigates how after about more than three decades that sense of crisis is still present with us, and the different forms it has taken: from the inception of the ‘culture of simulacra’, to its magnification in the Berlusconi age, and to a belated postmodern awareness of a crisis extending globewise to entropy point. It discusses different uses of Shakespeare, contrasting strategies of intermedial appropriation as critiques of a culture of simulacra with allegorical forms of ‘hyperreal’ adaptations that by recuperating ideas of ‘transparent representation’ sidestep preoccupations about the hyperreal. Central to the discussion is a reading of Massimo Cacciari’s interpretation of Hamlet as the inaugural point of the ‘crisis of modernity’ viewed as a longue-durée historical category.