Sunday, May 13, 2018

Shakespeare Reference in American Pictures

Jacob Holdt, a man from Denmark who hitchhiked around the United States for a long while, taking photos, mostly of the poor and forgotten, put together a book of these photos. American Pictures, the resulting book, contains a Shakespeare reference. He writes, “Just as colonized children everywhere will steal from you when you show them ‘master’-kindness, I found that the adult ‘rip-offs,’ ‘stealers,’ and even ‘strongarm studs’ were overwhelmed by Shakespearean motives: ‘I am one, my liege, whom the vile blows and buffets of the world have so incensed that I am reckless what I do to spite the world’” (p. 258). The quoted passage is from Macbeth, and is spoken by one of the murderers that Macbeth sets against Banquo.

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