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‘#DifferenceMakesUs’: Selling Shakespeare Online (and the Commerce Platform Etsy)

Blackwell Anna    DeMonfort University, UK    



The mission statement of the online creative commerce platform Etsy declares its commitment to “using the power of business to strengthen communities and empower people”. Among the many handmade and vintage items sold on Etsy are 3,811 items quoting Helena’s description of Hermia from A Midsummer Night’s Dream (“and though she be but little, she is fierce”). This journal paper will examine the relationship between Shakespeare and the predominantly female crafts people who operate through platforms such as these as well as Shakespeare’s own depiction of female craft and handcrafted items. It seeks to explore the processes at work in Shakespeare-inspired merchandise and the relationship they claim to the play texts they adapt. The paper will continue by situating ‘female’ oriented creative work within the current political climate and exploring both the possibilities and limitations of craft as a vehicle for political resistance.

Dec. 17, 2018
Dec. 15, 2018
Nov. 24, 2018

Keywords: ShakespeareNeoliberalismSewingFeminismWomenAdaptationHandcraft

Copyright: © 2018 Blackwell Anna. This is an open-access work distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction is permitted, provided that the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. The license allows for commercial use. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.