NYC school canceling ‘Merchant of Venice’ is utterly wrong way to fight anti-Semitism


Shakespeare’s “Merchant of Venice” has been canceled in yet another act of educational cowardice.

That is: 75 Morton, a Greenwich Village middle school with a renowned theater program, just aborted its production of the play after some Jewish parents asked if it’s fit for seventh-grade drama students.

Yes, the role of Shylock the moneylender hits pretty much all the ancient, ugly stereotypes. But the play is a major work of art that explores crucial themes of love, power and belief.

And it’s not clear how many parents wanted it canceled. “The way that anti-Semitism is shown in this play, if you don’t have a minimum of knowledge and context you can’t understand how bad and dangerous it is,” a member of the school community told The Post.

So give the kids — heck, the audience, too —that context. It can be an added lesson for all, and likely a valuable one. Seventh graders are old enough to get it. (They can read “Huck Finn” the next year, with yet more valuable context.)

If you cancel everything that needs explaining, you’re not in the business of teaching at all.


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