Read an excerpt from the introduction of a new book that assembles all of Shakespeare’s sonnets in their probable order of composition. The editors argue that readers can gain insight into Shakespeare’s personal experiences and emotions through the sonnets.
Posts Categorized: Off-the-shelf
Check out summer reading recommendations from friends, colleagues, and partners.
Hamnet was William Shakespeare’s only son, but he died in 1596 at the age of 11. Maggie O’Farrell’s new novel, Hamnet, imagines a story in which a young Latin tutor—penniless and bullied by a violent father—falls in love with an extraordinary, eccentric young woman. They marry and start a family in Stratford-upon-Avon. But as the… Continue Reading »
American actress Charlotte Cushman was a 19th-century theatrical icon, known for playing traditionally male roles like Romeo and Hamlet. She was not the only actress of her time to play these parts, but her style was uniquely assertive and athletic. However, her breakout acting role was Lady Macbeth.
At the heart of Keith Hamilton Cobb’s one-man play American Moor are explorations of blackness, racial dynamics in American theater, “ownership” of Shakespeare, and the subtext of Othello. He has performed the play across the United States, including an off-Broadway run in 2019, and now the script has been published by Methuen Drama: Keith Hamilton… Continue Reading »
What would it have been like to live through the plague outbreaks of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries? And what insight does that give us into the mentions of plague in Shakespeare’s plays?
What habits of mind should we seek to cultivate? In his new book How to Think Like Shakespeare: Lessons from a Renaissance Education, Scott Newstok draws on Shakespeare’s plays and common instructional practices of his day to answer this question. One of these practices is conversation, the subject of the chapter from which the below… Continue Reading »
In this excerpt from her new book, This is Shakespeare (published Mar 31 in the United States), Emma Smith probes the biographical interpretations that readers have layered over Shakespeare’s plays, particularly The Tempest, and how that shapes what we think of as their chronology and the arc of Shakespeare’s life and career. Underpinning these interpretations… Continue Reading »
Looking to escape in a good book? Take a break from non-fiction, and read these excerpts from Shakespeare-inspired novels that we’ve featured in the past two years on Shakespeare & Beyond.
The Taming of the Shrew is often referred to as one of Shakespeare’s “problem plays” because of its controversial depiction of gender roles; last year’s Broadway production of Kiss Me, Kate, the 1948 musical based on The Taming of the Shrew, revived discussions of the sexism at the heart of the story and its 16th-century… Continue Reading »