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The Cambridge Introduction To Shakespeare

Author: Emma Smith
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1139462393
Size: 28.62 MB
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This lively and innovative introduction to Shakespeare promotes active engagement with the plays, rather than recycling factual information. Covering a range of texts, it is divided into seven subject-based chapters: Character; Performance; Texts; Language; Structure; Sources and History, and it does not assume any prior knowledge. Instead, it develops ways of thinking and provides the reader with resources for independent research through the 'Where next?' sections at the end of each chapter. The book draws on scholarship without being overwhelmed by it, and unlike other introductory guides to Shakespeare it emphasizes that there is space for new and fresh thinking by students and readers, even on the most-studied and familiar plays.

The Cambridge Introduction To Shakespeare S Poetry

Author: Michael Schoenfeldt
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1139493485
Size: 58.31 MB
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Shakespeare's poems, aside from the enduring appeal of the Sonnets, are much less familiar today than his plays, despite being enormously popular in his lifetime. This Introduction celebrates the achievement of Shakespeare as a poet, providing students with ways of understanding and enjoying his remarkable poems. It honours the aesthetic and intellectual complexity of the poems without making them seem unapproachably complicated, outlining their exquisite pleasures and absorbing enigmas. Schoenfeldt suggests that today's readers are better able to analyze aspects of the poems that were formerly ignored or the source of scandal - the articulation of a fervent same-sex love, for example, or the incipient racism inherent in a hierarchy of light and dark. By engaging closely with Shakespeare's major poems - 'Venus and Adonis', 'Lucrece', 'The Phoenix and the Turtle', the Sonnets and 'A Lover's Complaint' - the Introduction demonstrates how much these extraordinary poems still have to say to us.

The Cambridge Introduction To Shakespeare S Comedies

Author: Penny Gay
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9781139469777
Size: 46.11 MB
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Why did theatre audiences laugh in Shakespeare's day? Why do they still laugh now? What did Shakespeare do with the conventions of comedy that he inherited, so that his plays continue to amuse and move audiences? What do his comedies have to say about love, sex, gender, power, family, community, and class? What place have pain, cruelty, and even death in a comedy? Why all those puns? In a survey that travels from Shakespeare's earliest experiments in farce and courtly love-stories to the great romantic comedies of his middle years and the mould-breaking experiments of his last decade's work, this book addresses these vital questions. Organised thematically, and covering all Shakespeare's comedies from the beginning to the end of his career, it provides readers with a map of the playwright's comic styles, showing how he built on comedic conventions as he further enriched the possibilities of the genre.

The Cambridge Introduction To Shakespeare S Tragedies

Author: Janette Dillon
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1139462431
Size: 79.20 MB
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Macbeth clutches an imaginary dagger; Hamlet holds up Yorick's skull; Lear enters with Cordelia in his arms. Do these memorable and iconic moments have anything to tell us about the definition of Shakespearean tragedy? Is it in fact helpful to talk about 'Shakespearean tragedy' as a concept, or are there only Shakespearean tragedies? What kind of figure is the tragic hero? Is there always such a figure? What makes some plays more tragic than others? Beginning with a discussion of tragedy before Shakespeare and considering Shakespeare's tragedies chronologically one by one, this 2007 book seeks to investigate such questions in a way that highlights both the distinctiveness and shared concerns of each play within the broad trajectory of Shakespeare's developing exploration of tragic form.

The Cambridge Companion To Shakespeare S History Plays

Author: Michael Hattaway
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 113982631X
Size: 22.88 MB
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Shakespeare's history plays have been performed more in recent years than ever before, in Britain, North America, and in Europe. This 2002 volume provides an accessible, wide-ranging and informed introduction to Shakespeare's history and Roman plays. It is attentive throughout to the plays as they have been performed over the centuries since they were written. The first part offers accounts of the genre of the history play, of Renaissance historiography, of pageants and masques, and of women's roles, as well as comparisons with history plays in Spain and the Netherlands. Chapters in the second part look at individual plays as well as other Shakespearean texts which are closely related to the histories. The Companion offers a full bibliography, genealogical tables, and a list of principal and recurrent characters. It is a comprehensive guide for students, researchers and theatre-goers alike.

The Cambridge Companion To Shakespeare S Poetry

Author: Patrick Cheney
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1139827464
Size: 36.97 MB
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This Companion provides a full introduction to the poetry of William Shakespeare through discussion of his freestanding narrative poems, the Sonnets, and his plays. Fourteen leading international scholars provide accessible and authoritative chapters on all relevant topics: from Shakespeare's seminal role in the development of English poetry, the wide-ranging practice of his poetic form, and his enigmatic place in print and manuscript culture, to his immersion in English Renaissance politics, religion, classicism, and gender dynamics. With individual chapters on Venus and Adonis, The Rape of Lucrece, The Passionate Pilgrim, 'The Phoenix and the Turtle', the Sonnets, and A Lover's Complaint, the Companion also includes chapters on the presence of poetry in the dramatic works, on the relation between poetry and performance, and on the reception and influence of the poems. The volume includes a chronology of Shakespeare's life, a note on reference works, and a reading list for each chapter.