Paul Cantor Transcript
Taped November 15, 2013
We have with us today, Paul Cantor
, who I've known for many years, and I'm thrilled to have him as a guest.
He's a Professor of Literature at the University of Virginia.
I took his course, I think, in the English department, when I was an undergraduate and when he was a young assistant professor at Harvard many decades ago.
At the time he
had already done important work on Shakespeare
and continued that work for the next three, four decades.
So we're going to talk about Shakespeare
: I feel I was destined to study Shakespeare
because my mother was born on April 23rd and that's Shakespeare's
: Well, now, you know it's based on the fact - I think he
was baptized on April 26th, so they usually waited three days to see if the kid would live.
And since he
did die on April 23 in 1616, they kind of - April 23 is his
: Well, I started in the ninth grade in what was then called junior high school.
: Yes, junior year in college.
That's pretty early.
: Yes, my dissertation, which became my first book, Shakespeare's
Rome, was on Coriolanus and Antony and Cleopatra, with some stuff on Julius Caesar.
: Yeah, and I was very inspired by the work of Allan Bloom and Harry Jaffa, particularly the book they did, Shakespeare's
Politics, which coincidentally came out in 1965 when I first started working on this with Harvey Mansfield.