In "Shakespeare: A Tribute", von Goethe seems to profess his adoration and wonderment at Shakespeare's written works from the position of one who is not worthy to be doing so. von Goethe praises him heavily, saying that he became completely hooked from just a single page of Shakespeare's; and while he says that he is capable only of conveying vague notions and ideas, von Goethe writes that after reading a Shakespearean drama he felt like a blind man who had been miraculously granted sight.
Hawkins presents two schools of thought in his Meaning By Shakespeare excerpt: first, that Shakespeare was just a normal Elizabethan who wrote some plays, and second, that these plays are so good, so universal, and so essential, that they should be read by any and all intellectuals. He goes on to say that, while, yes, Shakespeare had to have had some meaning behind his writing, we as scholars assign more meaning to his work than could ever have been thought of by the author himself. Honestly, I didn't really understand what this excerpt was trying to say.