Press release from Sunday September 23, 2007

SAC News Releases

May 4, 2016
Doubts about Shakespeare go international for the 400th anniversary
April 25, 2016
Sir Derek Jacobi and Mark Rylance revive the debate over Shakespeare's identity in an interview with NPR's Renée Montagne.
April 24, 2016
Doubters claim victory on Shakespeare 400th Anniversary, and renew their challenge to Stratfordians to participate in a mock trial.
March 23, 2016
The SAC at Age 10; Six New Notables; 400th Anniversary International Events
December 27, 2015
Declaration of Reasonable Doubt still un-rebutted after more than eight years
November 22, 2015
Droeshout engraving in First Folio has Shakspere wearing impossible doublet!
May 31, 2015
RSC removes Stanley Wells' article on “Authorship Debate” from its website!
September 28, 2014
SAC Update through September, 2014
December 6, 2013
SAC challenges the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust to a mock trial, to prove that Shakspere wrote Shakespeare, offering a £40K donation to the winning side.'
November 21, 2011
Actor Michael York and Shakespeare Authorship Coalition challenge the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust in Stratford-upon-Avon with new reasons to doubt the identity of the author William Shakespeare in the wake of Sony Pictures’ heretical film, Anonymous.
April 30, 2011
Over 2,000 sign Declaration of Reasonable Doubt
September 18, 2010
Theater professionals sign Shakespeare Authorship Declaration
April 20, 2010
Happy Birthday and Retirement, Justice John Paul Stevens!
April 19, 2010
Shakespeare Authorship Coalition updates Declaration signatory lists
November 15, 2009
U.S. Supreme Court Justices John Paul Stevens and Sandra Day O'Connor (retired) sign the Declaration of Reasonable Doubt.
April 13, 2009
Award-winning Shakespearean actors Sir Derek Jacobi and Mark Rylance joined by growing list of declared Shakespeare authorship doubters. Michael York joins fellow actors as SAC Patron. Shakespeare Authorship Coalition marks 2nd aniversary of Declaration of Reasonable Doubt. Seven signatories added to SAC “notables” list.
November 17, 2008
Huntington Library staff sign Declaration.
June 3, 2008
Sir Derek Jacobi joins the Shakespeare Authorship Coalition as a SAC patron.
December 1, 2007
First annual report of the Shakespeare authorship coalition: the Coalition’s strategy is working! Over 1,200 people have signed the Declaration of Reasonable Doubt, and we’ve attracted enormous attention to the authorship issue. With each new signatory, it becomes more difficult for orthodox scholars to continue claiming that there is “no room for doubt” about the identity of William Shakespeare.
September 23, 2007
Nearly 800 additional signatories have signed the “Declaration of Reasonable Doubt About the Identity of William Shakespeare” in the two weeks since prominent Shakespearean actors Sir Derek Jacobi and Mark Rylance, former artistic director at Shakespeare's Globe Theatre in London, gave the Declaration its launch in the U.K.
July 2, 2007
SAC adds 100 signers to the list of signatories of the “Declaration of Reasonable Doubt”.
April 23, 2007
SAC releases its first list of signatories of the “Declaration of Reasonable Doubt”, on the 391st anniversary of William Shakspere's death.
April 14, 2007
SAC and the Shakespeare Authorship Roundtable hold a signing ceremony to issue the “Declaration of Reasonable Doubt”
April 11, 2007
SAC and Shakespeare Authorship Roundtable to issue historic “Declaration of Reasonable Doubt”

SAC contact person: John Shahan at (909) 896-2006, or online.

— Nearly 800 additional signatories have signed the “Declaration of Reasonable Doubt About the Identity of William Shakespeare” in the two weeks since prominent Shakespearean actors Sir Derek Jacobi and Mark Rylance, former artistic director at Shakespeare's Globe Theatre in London, gave the Declaration its launch in the U.K. on September 8. “This puts the total well over 1,000 — our initial, pre-launch goal,” said SAC chairman John Shahan.

Jacobi and Rylance were joined by Dr. William Leahy, Head of English at Brunel University in West London, plus five others representing U.K.-based authorship societies supporting the candidacies of Sir Francis Bacon, Christopher Marlowe and Edward de Vere, 17th earl of Oxford. Two Stratfordian organizations (supporters of the traditional author from Stratford-on-Avon) declined their invitations.

The signing event followed a performance of Mark Rylance's new play about the authorship issue, “The BIG Secret Live — I am Shakespeare — Webcam Daytime Chat-Room Show” at the Minerva Theatre. The poster-sized copy of the Declaration was presented to Dr. Leahy in recognition of his launch of a new master's degree program in Shakespeare Authorship Studies at Brunel University. The event was well-covered in the media after being picked up by the BBC and Associated Press.

At the time of the post-play signing event in Chichester, 287 signatories had signed the Declaration. Following the event, an additional 788 had signed by today, bringing the total signatories up to 1075. The next official update of the SAC's lists of Declaration signatories, which are updated periodically on its website at, will take place on the morning of Monday, October 15.

A breakdown of signatory characteristics will be provided then, but they continue to include many academics and others with advanced degrees in their fields, including English, according to Shahan. “The main thing that's different about this group of signatories is their geographic diversity,” he said. Many are from the U.K, and U.S., but news of the events in the U.K. clearly went all over the world. Signers came from all parts of Europe, both Western and Eastern; several Middle Eastern countries; India; Pakistan; China; Japan; the Philippines; Australia; Canada and also Latin American countries.

“We've gotten off to a good start,” Shahan said, “but the real test will be whether more colleges and universities follow the lead of Brunel University in West London, and also Concordia University in Portland, Oregon, in opening up the issue and allowing curricula in Shakespeare authorship studies.” The stated goal of the Claremont, California-based Shakespeare Authorship Coalition (SAC) is to legitimize the Shakespeare authorship issue in academia by April 23, 2016, the 400th anniversary of the death of the traditional author, Stratford's William “Shakspere,” as his name was often spelled.

According to its website home page, the SAC “has nothing against the man from Stratford-on-Avon, but we doubt that he was the author of the works. Our goal is to legitimize the issue in academia so students, teachers and professors can feel free to pursue it. This is necessary because the issue is widely viewed as settled in academia and is treated as a taboo subject. We believe that an open-minded examination of the evidence shows that the issue should be taken seriously. Your signature on the declaration will help us make the case that there is reasonable doubt about the author.”

Visit the full gallery of photos from the ceremony.

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SAC contact person: John Shahan at (909) 896-2006, or online.