Several months ago, I found myself involved in a rather lengthy argument on The Bard Blog over whether or not we need to "translate" Shakespeare. http://www.bardblog.com/the-world-sans-shakespeare/ (Should you visit, you'll see that 'lengthy' might be an understatement--I ran on quite a bit as my alter-ego "Willshill", but then, so did Professor Richmond.)
The meaning of 'translate' is defined by a 'translator', who has decided that Shakespeare, as written, is just too darned hard for mere mortals such as we. A professor at Cal State, Long Beach, Kent Richmond, as we speak, is busy at work "rewriting" Shakespeare, his stated purpose being to make Shakespeare more accessible to all. http://www.fullmeasurepress.com/
It's my contention that his work does just the opposite of its stated purpose-- making actual Shakespeare inaccessible for several reasons; not the least of which is the fact that it seems Mr. Richmond intends his work to be a wholesale replacement for Shakespeare-- as we know it--in our educational venues. Surely there are better ways to sell books, as well as better ways to teach Shakespeare, the latter being the main problem, I think. (I've experienced the positive results of some of those better ways--more on that later) Is Shakespeare too hard? --or would another kind of approach help? What do you think?