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Monday, July 3, 2023

'Nudging the world a little'


“I don't think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones in the right order, you can nudge the world a little or make a poem which children will speak for you when you're dead.” – Tom Stoppard

Born on this date in 1937 in what is now the Czech Republic, Stoppard left as a child when the Nazis invaded and built his life in Great Britain where he was Knighted for his contributions to literature and the literary arts.  Stoppard has written prolifically for the stage, TV, radio, and film on the themes of human rights, censorship and political freedom. 

Nearly all his works (including his newest Tony Award winner "Leopoldstadt") have won some type of award.  He has authored 3 dozen plays, 17 original pieces for radio and television, and 15 movies.  He won a “Best Original Screenplay” Oscar for Shakespeare in Love, and additional Tony Awards for Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead, The Real Thing, Travesties, and The Coast of Utopia.

 Listed among the all-time most important cultural figures in British history, Stoppard was selected for "The America Award," a lifetime achievement literary award given to international writers.                                      

“When I began writing, I had a need to know more about the play before I got into it,” Stoppard said.   “...... But my actual experience is that the best way to find out what the structure is, is by writing the play out laterally. You just have got to be brave enough to start without knowing where you are going.”

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