Shakespeare's Dramatic Genres

Shakespeare's Dramatic Genres

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Oxford Shakespeare Topics provides students, teachers, and interested readers with short books on important aspects of Shakespeare criticism and scholarship. Each book is written by an authority in its field, and combines accessible style with original discussion of its subject. Notes and a critical guide to further reading equip the interested reader with the means to broaden research. The history of the genres, or kinds, of drama is one of contradictory traditions and complex cultural assumptions. The divisions established by the original edition of Mr. William Shakespeare's Comedies, Histories, and Tragedies (the First Folio, 1623) give shape to whole curricula; but, as Lawrence Danson reminds us in this lively book, there is nothing inevitable, and much unsatisfying, about that tripartite scheme. Yet students of Shakespeare cannot avoid thinking about questions of genre; often they are the unspoken reason why classrooms full of smart people fail to agree on basic interpretative issues.
Danson's guide to the kinds of Shakespearian drama provides an accessible account of genre-theory in Shakespeare's day, an overview of the genres on the Elizabethan stage, and a provocative look at the full range of Shakespeare's comedies, histories, and tragedies.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 166 pages
  • 132.1 x 193 x 17.8mm | 272.16g
  • Oxford University Press
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0198711735
  • 9780198711735

About Lawrence Danson

Lawrence Danson is Professor of English at Princeton University and the author of Max Beerbohm and the Act of Writing and Wilde's Intentions.
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Review quote

Lawrence Danson writes with a light touch ... The style is free of critical jargon in a way that would make it quite accessible to pre-university students ... gives a helpful introductory survey of Shakespeare's plays for the student who is beginning a serious study of Shakespeare Shakespeare Yearbook The book would justify its place on the shelves of a school library as a reference book for pre-university study ... Danson surveys Shakespeare's work in a way that offers insights that will be helpful for those students who have already read many of Shakespeare's plays, but who need an appropriate understanding of Shakespeare's cultural context to help them form their own views Shakespeare Yearbook Reading this book is like listening to a good teacher talk: it is clear, organized, and comprehensive ... Students may find the opening chapter and the overview of Shakespeare's histories particularly useful Sixteenth Century Journal Oxford University Press offer a mix of engagingly written introductions to a variety of Topics intended largely for undergraduates. Each author has clearly been reading and listening to the most recent scholarship, but they wear their learning lightly Ruth Morse, Times Literary Supplement Oxford Shakespeare Topics is a new series of handsomely produced volumes Jonathan Bate, Times Literary Supplement Witty and accessible in style, broad in range but with no sacrifice of depth, equally attuned to the theatrical practice and the literary theory of Shakespeare's time, apt in its modern comparisons ... in every respect, it answers to the remit of the series and can be warmly recommended to both playgoers and students at every level Jonathan Bate, Times Literary Supplement
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Table of contents

Note on Texts; The Genres in Theory; The Genres Staged; Mr William Shakespeare's Comedies; History; Tragedy; Epilogue; Notes; Further Reading; Index
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4 40% (4)
3 50% (5)
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