Almost instantly after its publishing, the title of Salman Rushdie’s fourth novel The Satanic Verses has become known to the worldwide audience as one of the most controversial books of the 20th century. Both the novel and its author have become practically inseparable from the notion of fatwa – a legal pronouncement in Islam that Rushdie was sentenced to by the Iranian religious and political leader Ayatollah Homeini.
“Words, words, words.” – Shakespeare, Hamlet
For the genuine lovers of the written word 23 April is a remarkable day, since Shakespeare’s 449th birthday is celebrated on this day. Although Shakespeare’s plays were written to be performed at the Globe, on the south bank of the Father Thames, today they attract the audience around the globe. The power of the Bard’s magical pen can be felt today, even though the Golden age of the Queen Elizabeth I is centuries behind us.