For the past year, the Shakespeare Oxford Fellowship has been running a very entertaining series, “How I became an Oxfordian,” in which their members tell their personal stories of how they came to doubt the traditional biography of Shakespeare. This week it’s my turn:
“Why would anybody believe it?” The teenaged girl’s eyes were wide, her head shaking. She’d come to the front of the school auditorium to speak to Charles Beauclerk, the Earl of Burford, whom I had brought to her Edmonton, Alberta high school as a part of his 1993 tour. Charles’ talk in support of Edward de Vere as the author of the plays and poems had totally destroyed the Stratford myth for this young woman, and her question has stayed with me ever since.