The First Part of King Henry the Sixth

The First Part of King Henry the Sixth

3.59 (3,768 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

George Lyman Kittredge's insightful editions of Shakespeare have endured in part because of his eclecticism, his diversity of interests, and his wide-ranging accomplishments--all of which are reflected in the valuable notes in each volume. The plays in the New Kittredge Shakespeare series retain their original Kittredge notes and introductions, changed or augmented only when some modernization seems necessary. These new editions also include introductory essays by contemporary editors, notes on the plays as they have been performed on stage and film, and additional student materials. These plays are being made available by Focus Publishing with the permission of the Kittredge heirs.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 134 pages
  • 139.7 x 210.82 x 10.16mm | 158.76g
  • Focus Publishing/R Pullins & Co
  • USA, United States
  • English
  • Photos from major productions
  • 1585103365
  • 9781585103362

Review quote

Even as the New Kittredge Shakespeare series glances back to George Lyman Kittredge's student editions of the plays, it is very much of our current moment: the slim editions are targeted largely at high school and first-year college students who are more versed in visual than in print culture. Not only are the texts of the plays accompanied by photographs or stills from various stage and cinema performances: the editorial contributions are performance-oriented, offering surveys of contemporary film interpretations, essays on the plays as performance pieces, and an annotated filmography. Traditional editorial issues (competing versions of the text, cruxes, editorial emendation history) are for the most part excluded; the editions focus instead on clarifying the text with an eye to performing it. There is no disputing the pedagogic usefulness of the New Kittredge Shakespeare's performance-oriented approach. At times, however, it can run the risk of treating textual issues as impediments, rather than partners, to issues of performance. This is particularly the case with a textually vexed play such as "Pericles: Prince of Tyre." In the introduction to the latter, Jeffrey Kahan notes the frequent unintelligibility of the play as originally published: "the chances of a reconstructed text matching what Shakespeare actually wrote are about 'nil'" (p. xiii) But his solution -- to use a "traditional text" rather than one corrected as are the Oxford and Norton "Pericles" -- obscures how this "traditional text," including its act and scene division, is itself a palimpsest produced through three centuries of editorial intervention. Nevertheless, the series does a service to its target audience with its emphasis on performance and dramaturgy. Kahan's own essay about his experiences as dramaturge for a college production of "Pericles" is very good indeed, particularly on the play's inability to purge the trace of incestuous desire that Pericles first encounters in Antioch. Otheshow more

Back cover copy

"Michele Willems's edition of "The First Part of King Henry the Sixth" offers valuable insights into this little-known and puzzling play. . . . She rightly underscores the overwhelming presence in the play of ambivalence, contradiction, irony, and multiple angles of vision. . . . Illustrations from performance history help bring to life this underrated and fascinating historical saga." --David Bevington, University of Chicago"This intelligent, performance-based edition should encourage both schools and theaters to pay more attention to this interesting but largely neglected play. Professor Willems' comparisons of the readily available BBC version with other productions bring the play alive, while her thorough knowledge of the play's historical background, in both England and France, adds an important dimension to the annotations." --Lois Potter, University of DelawareGeorge Lyman Kittredge's insightful editions of Shakespeare have endured in part because of his eclecticism, his diversity of interests, and his wide-ranging accomplishments--all of which are reflected in the valuable notes in each volume. The plays in the New Kittredge Shakespeare series retain their original Kittredge notes and introductions, changed or augmented only when some modernization seems necessary. These new editions also include introductory essays by contemporary editors, notes on the plays as they have been performed on stage and film, and additional student materials. These plays are being made available by Focus Publishing with the permission of the Kittredge heirs.Michele Willems, Professor Emeritus, taught English Renaissance Literature for 33 years at the University of Rouen (France). She has published extensively on Shakespeare, including the essay"""Video and its paradoxes" in "The Cambridge Companion to Shakespeare on Film" (Cambridge University Press).show more

About William Shakespeare

Michele Willems, Professor Emeritus, taught English Renaissance Literature for 33 years at the University of Rouen (France). She has published extensively on Shakespeare, including the essay"""Video and its paradoxes" in "The Cambridge Companion to Shakespeare on Film" (Cambridge University Press).show more

Rating details

3,768 ratings
3.59 out of 5 stars
5 21% (806)
4 31% (1,175)
3 35% (1,329)
2 10% (385)
1 2% (73)
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