Was Shakespeare's ghost writer ... Shakespeare?

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To most people, the literary debate over who wrote the works of William Shakespeare would appear to be much ado about nothing. After all, the play's the thing, right? What does it matter who wrote it?

To James Shapiro, however, it matters a great deal.

The Columbia University professor and Shakespeare scholar spent 15 years working on his 2005 book, "A Year in the Life of William Shakespeare: 1599." The work exhaustively details a key year in the Bard's career, when he wrote "Henry V" and "Julius Caesar" and became the man thought of as history's greatest English-language dramatist.

And yet he couldn't convince the doubters, who believe that the name "William Shakespeare" is a front for the real author.

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