Open Letter to the Shakespeare Fellowship Board
It should be of great concern to all fair-minded members of the Shakespeare Fellowship that the board of the SF has followed in the footsteps of the De Vere Society board’s proclamation of true faith and dogma regarding the Prince Tudor theory in all its forms.
Many reasonable and influential persons from the earliest beginnings of the Oxford movement have given credence to evidence for the Prince Tudor issues.
The one-sided pontifical statement from the SF board that documents do not support the Prince Tudor theories is akin to Stratfordian claims that documents, such as the 1623 Folio, do not support Oxford’s authorship. The authenticity of these Stratfordian documents and evidence for the Stratford man’s authorship have been challenged by Oxfordians and so too have the documents and evidence concerning Edward de Vere’s background been challenged by numerous Oxfordians, who maintain that there is not only a problem about the authorship of Shakespeare but about the identity of the true author as well, which they link up with his suppression and total erasure from Elizabethan history.
The SF board’s venture into propounding a dogma on the evidence concerning these contentious issues within the Oxford movement is a dangerous precedent, and one the board has no business getting into. The weighing of evidence is each member’s prerogative. It is not the SF board’s place to lay down pontifical one-sided statements about documentation and evidence on this or any other issue.
The Prince Tudor theories are an intensely debated issue among Oxfordians with members taking different sides in the debate. It is an extremely emotional issue for some people in the Fellowship and in the Oxfordian movement that has led to much rancor and nastiness. If we are to avoid the intolerant and dogmatic “One True Church” approach of the de Vere Society in England we must maintain an open and free debate on this and other issues in contention between Oxfordians.
It is true that Oxford’s authorship is not dependent on whether or not one is a proponent or opponent of the Prince Tudor theories, but rather than imposing a dogma that represents only one view of the Price Tudor evidence—which has no place in a group formed to openly question the entire authorship issue—the board would have better served its members and the cause of open discussion and truth seeking if it had stated that this is an issue like many others that is open to debate.