Looking back at the posts I have written thus far this semester, one thing that stood out to me immediately was my tendency to gravitate toward subject topics that were typically thematic in nature. Rather than choosing blog post topics that are nuanced or focus on very minute details of the play, I often try to grasp some sort of larger concept that relates to the given work.
For example, in my most recent post, I focused on the idea of what qualities make for a good king. I spoke about how, although determining whether an individual is a good or a bad ruler is perhaps moot, there is arguably quite a bit of value in observing what Shakespeare might be commenting upon in terms of what makes a good ruler, etc. I think the idea of what constitutes a good ruler is an important thematic focus when it comes to the history plays overall, even though a question like “what makes a good king” is, of course, contentious.
In fact, upon further observation, my blog posts often tend to focus on these sorts of argument-driven ideas (i.e. ideas that can be endlessly debated upon but ultimately do not have a particular resolution/ answer/etc.)—as opposed to, say, blog posts that some of my peers have done wherein they choose an aspect of the given play and research it further in the hopes of elucidating some particular aspect Shakespeare’s culture, etc. (ex. I vaguely recall someone doing a blog post in which he or she looked into the subject of friars in reference to discussing Romeo and Juliet—which I thought was a fascinating idea for a blog post, even more so because I personally would never think to choose a research-orientated topic like that).
Overall, I think the fact that my blogs are often focused around debatable subjects speaks to my personality; I absolutely love debates and argumentative essays (both reading them and writing them). I have always found essays and arguments fascinating, even the ones that don’t have a clear resolution at the end—ESPECIALLY the ones that do not have a clear resolution at the end. I think what interests me about these kinds of debates is the conversational element that they provoke. When I wrote my blog post on what makes a good king, for example, there is obviously no clear, definitive, universal answer to that question—but I find it extremely interesting to think about and discuss those sorts of things, and I think one can still learn a lot from subjects that are uncertain or ones that are shrouded in debate. Ultimately, I think that’s why I enjoy this blogging assignment so much—because it incites both conversation and personal thought.