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Old 28 May 2009, 07:08 PM
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Icon220 Shakespeare Lady of New Haven

Comment: This is a story that is fairly local to New Haven, Connecticut.
It is quite interesting. There is a black woman who is homeless, wanders
the streets of New Haven and is masterful in reciting Shakespeare.
Locally she is known as 'The Shakespeare Lady.'
There are numerous references to her in Google and it cites her real name
as Margaret Holloway. It is reported that she holds several degrees
including a Master of Fine Arts from Yale. It is also cited that she
suffers from schizophrenia. The local scuttlebutt is that her current
condition is the result of a horrific crime.

This is the part that may or may not be 'urban legend' aspect of things.
It is rumored that three white Yale students raped her and she was so
traumatized by that experience that she lapsed into mental illness and has
been that way every since. Of all of the 'googled' articles there is
nothing to support that story. It just may be the makings of a good local
yarn, but it is sad to see her without direction and homeless.

There are numerous articles and there is a DVD about her that is available
for sale (God Didn't Give Me a Week's Notice). It's a curious story and
to see her wandering the streets of New Haven (proficiently reciting lines
from Shakespeare) makes it even more intriguing.
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  #2  
Old 28 May 2009, 08:01 PM
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Here's a story, from Free Republic of all sources:

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-chat/1482639/posts
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  #3  
Old 28 May 2009, 08:27 PM
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RivkahChaya RivkahChaya is offline
 
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Quote:
This is the part that may or may not be 'urban legend' aspect of things. It is rumored that three white Yale students raped her and she was so traumatized by that experience that she lapsed into mental illness and has been that way every since.
While post-traumatic stress disorder can interfere with daily functioning, it isn't a psychosis, and trauma doesn't cause schizophrenia. Schizophrenia is an organic brain disorder. A lot more people know this than did, say, 20 years ago, but there are still a lot of people who don't. If we had a "Things you wish people knew" thread, I'd put this there.

Second, schizophrenia and drug addcition is a really difficult combination of problems to treat, from what I understand-- I've never dealt with it personally. But what people who have, have told me, is that anti-psychotics can deaden the high from the street drugs, making it exceptionally difficult to get addicts to stay on their medications. And a lapse in medication is very bad, because as long as you are on medication, your self-care tends to be pretty good, and you stay on your medication, but a break in medication results in degeneration of self-care, and continued non-medication.

Last edited by RivkahChaya; 28 May 2009 at 08:31 PM. Reason: fixed quote
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Old 11 June 2009, 01:47 AM
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She is real, and I paid her spare change once to recite the prologue to the Canterbury Tales in the original Old English (or is it Middle English? That, I forget). I have no idea about her life story or how she got how she is, but a friend who possibly knew more than I did once confirmed that "she has had a lot of bad luck in life."
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Old 11 June 2009, 05:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ramblin' Dave View Post
"she has had a lot of bad luck in life."
As already said above, bad luck doesn't give you schizophrenia. OTOH people with schizophrenia can't generally deal with bad luck very well.
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Old 11 June 2009, 05:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joostik View Post
As already said above, bad luck doesn't give you schizophrenia. OTOH people with schizophrenia can't generally deal with bad luck very well.
Some might argue that having schizophrenia is in and of itself bad luck.
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