After asking visitors of Ask500People.com if they had a good experience with Shakespeare in school, I decided to ask another.
After the many intriguing responses to my question on the blog if you had read all of Shakespeare’s works, I wanted to get more specific with this little survey.
I asked, “How many of Shakespeare’s plays have you read?” I got 127 responses. Their option were 1-5, 5-10, 10-20, and more than 20. I realize now that I created an overlap. It should be 1-5, 6-10, etc. Oh well. Anyhoo, 70% of the responses said that they had read between one and five of Shakespeare’s plays. 4% had read more than 20. There were also two comments left that said they had read none. See more results here.
The results aren’t super accurate with only 127 votes, but probably close-ish to the the average in the US (where most of the responses were from). I can’t say I was surprised… but I wish I could make the options more specific. Ask500people only lets you give 4 options. The comments that said “none” surprised me a little. I know there are people out there that have not read Shakespeare, but I do forget sometimes. It seems a little odd to me since it’s usually required reading in school.
If you haven’t read all of the plays, feel free to leave your number. But in response to this flawed poll, what do you think? Should people be required to read more Shakespeare in school? I only was required to read two in high school!!! Romeo & Juliet and Macbeth. We studied Midsummer in Junior High as well, but not very closely as far I can remember. Is that enough? Do you think the average of plays read will increase as programs like Stand Up For Shakespeare gain more support? Or will Shakespeare always be the author who “isn’t for everybody”?