Marilyn Simon

Marilyn Simon

Dr. Marilyn Simon is a Shakespeare scholar and university instructor. She is currently working on a book entitled "Fucking: An Inquiry."

Fatal Vision: Joel Coen’s ‘Macbeth’

Fatal Vision: Joel Coen’s ‘Macbeth’

“I am in this earthly world, where to do harm / Is often laudable, to do good / Sometime accounted dangerous folly.” So says Lady Macduff in Shakespeare’s Macbeth. Moments later, she and her entire family—innocents all—are slaughtered. The triumph of Joel Coen’s film adaptation is that it

Marilyn Simon
Marilyn Simon
7 min read
Art and Culture
The Language of Sex

The Language of Sex

I had my first “sexual” experiences as a child, somewhere around the fifth or sixth grade. These experiences involved my closest childhood friend. We would play “kidnap” at her house. I’m not entirely sure what the actual plot of the game involved; what I recollect was that one of

Marilyn Simon
Marilyn Simon
10 min read
Sex
Identity and the Self in 'Hamlet'

Identity and the Self in 'Hamlet'

“Who’s there?” These are the two words that begin Shakespeare’s Hamlet. It is primarily this question, and not “To be or not to be?” with which Hamlet wrestles throughout the play. The two words are spoken from one soldier to another; Elsinore’s castle guards are on the

Marilyn Simon
Marilyn Simon
13 min read
Art
In Defense of Shame

In Defense of Shame

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit the Western world, many government health agencies came out with official advisory guidelines on how to engage in healthy sex during the pandemic. They thought it first important to state that having sex is good for one’s health: “Sex can be very important for

Marilyn Simon
Marilyn Simon
8 min read
COVID-19
The Attack on Beauty

The Attack on Beauty

There is a pop song by Canadian artist Alessia Cara that my daughters have learned to sing in their school choir. The song is “Scars to Your Beautiful.” It is a catchy, simple song. Many readers probably know it. The message it promotes is, by all accounts, a positive one,

Marilyn Simon
Marilyn Simon
10 min read
Feminism
My Own Private Chateau—Pauline Réage's 'Story of O' Revisited

My Own Private Chateau—Pauline Réage's 'Story of O' Revisited

I’m sitting on a plane and I’m feeling increasingly excited. I’m flushed. My heart rate is up, and I can’t seem to find a comfortable way to sit. My agitation isn’t caused by any nervousness about flying, nor by any fears of contracting COVID-19

Marilyn Simon
Marilyn Simon
14 min read
Books
Long-Distance Love during Lockdown

Long-Distance Love during Lockdown

I was going to start this essay by writing that, even at the best of times, long-distance relationships are difficult. But that’s not true at all. At the best of times, a long-distance relationship is wonderful, even ideal. After all, my boyfriend and I are both grown-ups. We have

Marilyn Simon
Marilyn Simon
6 min read
COVID-19
No, COVID-19 Is Not a 'Disaster for Feminism'

No, COVID-19 Is Not a 'Disaster for Feminism'

I wasn’t especially surprised to find an essay in the Atlantic calling the COVID-19 pandemic a “disaster for feminism.” But I am disappointed. It seems that the author, Helen Lewis, undervalues “women’s work” simply because it is unpaid labour. But to undervalue unpaid labour is

Marilyn Simon
Marilyn Simon
5 min read
COVID-19