Hey there! Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free

If Shakespeare or Van Gogh didn't exist, would the world be worse off? Watch

  • View Poll Results: Would the human race be considerably worse off?
    Yes
    6
    60.00%
    No
    4
    40.00%

    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    We'd still be eating the same food, have computers, have the same life expectancy etc. so why are these people held in such high regard? I personally think their achievements are pointless to the human race, we'd probably be speaking a slightly different form of English but then again we're hardly speaking Shakespearan English today are we? The language evolves all the time. Same applies with Van Gogh and his sunflowers, who cares? Also you can extend the argument to people like Beethoven.
    Offline

    16
    ReputationRep:
    I imagine they're good inspiration to those in that field of study/work. Personally, I could have done without being taught or shown their works and not really be any different, but others would probably be different, and that would in some way have a knock on effect to me. Or something along those lines
    Offline

    16
    ReputationRep:
    Of course the world would be worse off. Because their cultural legacy is massive and millions of people all over the world enjoy their work. Just because you appear to be something of a cultural philistine, doesn't make them worthless :rolleyes:

    To use another example, I'm not particularly keen on Michael Jackson, but I would never call his music worthless, because I understand how important it has been to many people. Stop being so narrow-minded, you're embarrassing yourself.
    • Offline

      21
      They did mickey mouse degrees.

      Where would we be without the mathematicians...
      • Thread Starter
      Offline

      0
      ReputationRep:
      (Original post by FormerlyFrisbeeFan)
      Of course the world would be worse off. Because their cultural legacy is massive and millions of people all over the world enjoy their work. Just because you appear to be something of a cultural philistine, doesn't make them worthless :rolleyes:

      To use another example, I'm not particularly keen on Michael Jackson, but I would never call his music worthless, because I understand how important it has been to many people. Stop being so narrow-minded, you're embarrassing yourself.
      I feel so embarrassed now that you've suggested I should feel that way.
      Offline

      1
      ReputationRep:
      Imagine.. no Othello essays set every other day leaving me awake till 3am finishing them off. :moon:
      Offline

      16
      ReputationRep:
      (Original post by Brutal Honesty)
      I feel so embarrassed now that you've suggested I should feel that way.
      Excellent
      Offline

      0
      ReputationRep:
      If van Gogh and Shakespeare not existed, two very important cultural fields (and arguably culture as a whole) would have probably taken completely different directions. As two artists whose work has enriched the lives of millions of people, including myself, I would say the world would be worse off had they not existed though of course we would not be aware of what we had missed out on.

      A life without culture would be one not worth living for me, so I must state the importance of two titans of art. There is far more to life than basic practical concerns - that is what supposedly elevates our species above the other animals and although I do not necessarily believe in the utter superiority of humans, I feel pleased I am a human being when I look at the thousands of years of extraordinary paintings, building, books, plays, pieces of music, sculptures, poems and everything else we have produced.
      Offline

      1
      ReputationRep:
      Actually, you'd be surprised at how many words Shakespeare contributed to the English language.
      Offline

      14
      ReputationRep:
      (Original post by Brutal Honesty)
      We'd still be eating the same food, have computers, have the same life expectancy etc. so why are these people held in such high regard? I personally think their achievements are pointless to the human race, we'd probably be speaking a slightly different form of English but then again we're hardly speaking Shakespearan English today are we? The language evolves all the time. Same applies with Van Gogh and his sunflowers, who cares? Also you can extend the argument to people like Beethoven.
      Well you would be talking differently than you are now. Shakespeare coined many, many new words.
      Offline

      14
      ReputationRep:
      (Original post by Johnny Christ)
      Actually, you'd be surprised at how many words Shakespeare contributed to the English language.
      Ooooh you got there just a minute before I did :p:
      Offline

      1
      ReputationRep:
      (Original post by Johnny Christ)
      Actually, you'd be surprised at how many words Shakespeare contributed to the English language.
      Yesterday, I learnt that the word 'lovely' was one of Shakespeare's creations. Mind blown.
      • Thread Starter
      Offline

      0
      ReputationRep:
      (Original post by Johnny Christ)
      Actually, you'd be surprised at how many words Shakespeare contributed to the English language.
      Far more words have been created and added to the English language in the last ten years than Shakespeare ever created in his lifetime. If you look at how much the language has evolved since his time, it dwarfs his contribution significantly. We might be speaking a slightly different form of English but who cares?
      • Thread Starter
      Offline

      0
      ReputationRep:
      (Original post by Kaykiie)
      Well you would be talking differently than you are now. Shakespeare coined many, many new words.
      So? A lot of words we use nowadays are adopted from other languages anyway, we might be speaking a more universal form of English without him. I don't think our communication skills have improved significantly because of him, nor do I think we'd struggle to speak to each other without his contribution to English.
      Offline

      2
      ReputationRep:
      Without Shakespeare, the world would be a better place. Students would be taught about something useful rather than having to study poorly written, irrelevant texts.
      Offline

      2
      ReputationRep:
      Yes, without Shakespeare we would be worse off, I could live without Van Gogh though, he wasn't quite as important. I feel a little pretentious wriitng this, becaause I sort of look to the millions starving and dying and what have you not speaking my language and not having ever seen, let alone read a play by Shakespeare, but at the same time, I do believe that it can pretty much be agreed upon that all art is a good thing, it is good that people are doing it, a 'why? why not.' kind of thing. I appreciate the huge amounts of words he created, but for me, Shakespeare is the experience of Shakespeare, I think if you watch King Lear, and you take something away from it, a snatch of poetry, a general sense, then the rest is a footnote. I am rambling, and not making a huge amount of sense, so, basically, yes.
      Offline

      14
      ReputationRep:
      (Original post by Brutal Honesty)
      Far more words have been created and added to the English language in the last ten years than Shakespeare ever created in his lifetime. If you look at how much the language has evolved since his time, it dwarfs his contribution significantly. We might be speaking a slightly different form of English but who cares?
      Plenty of people care. Each (significant) contribution to the English Language is an important one and that (unfortunately for you) includes Shakespeare.
      Offline

      16
      ReputationRep:
      Why do you care so much? I don't think anyone could argue against the fact that they are cultural icons and have contributed hugely to the cultural history of Europe. You can hardly argue either against the fact that millions of people worldwide have loved and been enormously affected by their works. So clearly, the world would be worse off without them. Just because you don't care for them, doesn't change any of the facts.
      Offline

      1
      ReputationRep:
      (Original post by Kaykiie)
      Ooooh you got there just a minute before I did :p:
      :smug: Beaten by a pro.


      (Original post by happyfeet*)
      Yesterday, I learnt that the word 'lovely' was one of Shakespeare's creations. Mind blown.
      The one that got me was 'eyeball' :nooo:
      • Thread Starter
      Offline

      0
      ReputationRep:
      (Original post by FormerlyFrisbeeFan)
      Why do you care so much? I don't think anyone could argue against the fact that they are cultural icons and have contributed hugely to the cultural history of Europe. You can hardly argue either against the fact that millions of people worldwide have loved and been enormously affected by their works. So clearly, the world would be worse off without them. Just because you don't care for them, doesn't change any of the facts.
      They're not that important. When you consider only a minority of people actually speak English it renders Shakespeare's works useless for most people and even then only a tiny minority of English speakers know his works in detail. Van Gogh painted things, so what? I can google image "sunflowers" and see far superior images of sunflowers than the ones he conjured up.
     
     
     
  1. See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  2. Will you be richer or poorer than your parents?
    Useful resources
  3. See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  4. The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

    Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

    Quick reply
    Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.