Sunday, May 6, 2012

A Jesuit Saint And Shakespeare

The play Romeo and Juliet reflects in its moral theme some of the poetry and writing of the Jesuit priest and martyr, St. Robert Southwell, most notably in his poem, "Lewd Love is Loss". Southwell wrote of the difference between true love, i.e. caritas or charity, and the false love inspired by Venus or Eros, i.e. venereal or erotic "love". This is William Shakespeare's primary theme in Romeo and Juliet, of course. In my book, "Shakespeare On Love: Seeing the Catholic Presence in Romeo and Juliet", which will be published by Ignatius Press this autumn, there is a long appendix section on "The Jesuit Connection" in which Shakespeare's creative debt to Southwell is explored.
Link (here) to Joseph Pearce's full piece at St Austin Review

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