I loved reading your comments about Shakespeare and how you have incorporated it into your lives… you really got me thinking girls!  In a very good way.

I agree that Shakespeare is an extremely intelligent writer, with great use of language and exquisitely described emotion.

I do not think it is appropriate for children.  Mostly.  Like  Seraphim mentioned, "Shakespeare wrote some of the most lyrical and beautiful verses that have
endured for centuries and I see no harm in sharing that with children."

True that.

In my personal experience, I read and saw Romeo and Juliet when I
was in middle school… I was totally distracted by the 'sex' scene. The story…the fantastic tragedy and
heart wrenching love saga… were all lost on me. I was a teenager.  And I do not believe mine was an abnormal response.

If one of the defenses is, "Children should learn this literature and the
human complexities behind it and understand the value of 'classic'

…well, then should they be reading adapted versions?  If
that is truly the argument, then what value is the 'childrens' version,
where the beauty of the language and the true story is not represented?

That being said, I do not think the content is appropriate for children.  Most certainly not for 7, 8, 9 or 10 year olds.

Now, am I so old fashioned as to try and shield my children from every genre that Shakespeare represents?

Golly no.

Thats what the Bible is for.  The original great

The Bible has its own share of lust, incest, murder,
deception, and greed.  The benefit of children hearing it from the
Bible is the follow through.  Not only are they exposed to the
grotesque sin of all man, but it is coupled with the grace, mercy, and forgiveness of a holy and loving God.

Can a child truly understand Shakespeare and his complex irony if
they don't have a strong Biblical foundation to perceive it from? 
Maybe.  But I am not willing to take the chance with my children.

So, thats my opinion.  I apologize if this is offensive to anyone. 

But I thank you for sharing your insights and hope you know that you made an impact!

Share with your friends!

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Meet Amanda Rettke

Amanda Rettke is the creator of I Am Baker, and the bestselling author of Surprise Inside Cakes: Amazing Cakes for Every Occasion – With a Little Something Extra Inside.Over the course of her 15+ year blogging adventure, she has been featured in and collaborated with the Food Network, New York Times, LA Times, Country Living Magazine, People Magazine, Epicurious, Brides, Romantic Homes, life:beautiful, Publishers Weekly, The Daily Mail, Star Tribune, The Globe and Mail, DailyCandy, YumSugar, The Knot, The Kitchn, and Parade, to name a few.

Reader Comments

  1. I didn’t answer on the Shakespeare because honestly I didn’t know. Not having kids myself right now, I couldn’t remember if it would be appropriate or not. I do know that at 16-17 years old I still barely understood it, so I totally agree with you!

  2. Definitely something for an older set of kids. I read Romeo and Juliet in middle school (about 14) and I don’t remember a sex scene, but I don’t remember much. I think it is old age kicking in. I think it would be appropriate to share bits and pieces but probably not whole works.

  3. Definitely something for an older set of kids. I read Romeo and Juliet in middle school (about 14) and I don’t remember a sex scene, but I don’t remember much. I think it is old age kicking in. I think it would be appropriate to share bits and pieces but probably not whole works.

  4. Awesomely put, Amanda! All literature pales in value to the beauty, depth, and most of all, life-changing grace that’s found in God’s Word!
    Happy Friday!

  5. I agree. I think some parents wish to introduce their children to the “classics”, but don’t realize that there are many inappropriate scenes. Yes, the Bible is the best book to read about those subjects. It presents it in such an open, straightforward, un-romanticized way. Great subject for discussion!

  6. I agree with you 🙂
    Besides, the beauty of Shakespeare is going to go over their heads until they’re much older, IMO.

  7. My kids are 15, 10, and 5. I’ve learned that I go with the cues that my kids are giving. What I mean by that is, kids are exposed to so many things at school, etc. When they come home and say a word or ask about something that isn’t always appropriate at their age, but must have heard it somewhere, then it’s time to give them accurate information. I’m finding that especially necessary with the 15 year old. They tend to call names that fly off the tongue, but truly don’t know the true meaning or don’t take the time to think about what the meaning of the things they say are. I think with Shakespeare I’d do the same. If they ask about it, or express an interest then it’s time. If they are old enough to ask, they are old enough to have it explained. I would rather them have correct information from me, than ask a friend and walk around with a lot of misconstrued thoughts or ideas.

  8. I think that some books and some authors need a level of understanding that children do not posses and that’s fine, they’re children!
    So, they should be enjoying some lectures appropriate for them, and of course to learn about good and bad, kindness and sorrows in a more adult and strong way, they have the Bible.

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