Shakespeare's History Plays

Shakespeare's History Plays : Performance, Translation and Adaptation in Britain and Abroad

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This 2004 volume, with a foreword by Dennis Kennedy, addresses a range of attitudes to Shakespeare's English history plays in Britain and abroad from the early seventeenth century to the present day. It concentrates on the play texts as well as productions, translations and adaptations of them. The essays explore the multiple points of intersection between the English history they recount and the experience of British and other national cultures, establishing the plays as genres not only relevant to the political and cultural history of Britain but also to the history of nearly every nation worldwide. The plays have had a rich international reception tradition but critics and theatre historians abroad, those practising 'foreign' Shakespeare, have tended to ignore these plays in favour of the comedies and tragedies. By presenting the British and foreign Shakespeare traditions side by side, this volume seeks to promote a more finely integrated world Shakespeare.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 302 pages
  • 152 x 229 x 17mm | 570g
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 10 Halftones, unspecified
  • 052182902X
  • 9780521829021

Table of contents

Acknowledgements; List of illustrations; List of contributors; Foreword: histories and nations Dennis Kennedy; Introduction: Shakespeare's history plays in Britain and abroad Ton Hoenselaars; Part I: Introduction: alienating histories Ton Hoenselaars; 1. Ireland as foreign and familiar in Shakespeare's histories Andrew Murphy; 2. Welshness in Shakespeare's English histories Lisa Hopkins; 3. A French history of Henry V Jean-Michel Deprats; 4. Shakespeare's history plays in Japan Daniel Gallimore; Part II: Introduction: the appropriated past Ton Hoenselaars; 5. Rent-a-past: Italian responses to Shakespeare's histories (1800-1950) Mariangela Tempera; 6. Brecht and the rediscovery of Henry VI James N. Loehlin; 7. Shakespeare's histories in cycles Edward Burns; 8. Shakespeare's history plays in Bulgaria Alexander Shurbanov and Boika Sokolova; Part III: Introduction: stage adaptations of the histories Ton Hoenselaars; 9. Shakespeare's English histories at the Vienna Burgtheater Manfred Draudt; 10. The Spanish premiere of Richard II Keith Gregor; 11. Shakespearean history at the Avignon Festival Dominique Goy-Blanquet; 12. Two Flemings at war with Shakespeare Ton Hoenselaars; Select bibliography; Index.
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Review quote

'... the book will deservedly find a wide audience across the English/Drama subject a read, offering cogent textual and performance criticism as well as theorized rejection of recent disintegrationist responses to the history plays.' Gabriel Egan, New Theatre Quarterly "The 12 essays and introduction provide an excellent investigation into a complex history. Highly recommended." A. Castaldo, Widener University, CHOICE "an excellent volume." - Sixteenth Century Journal Brad Greenburg, Northeastern Illinois University
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About Dennis Kennedy

Ton Hoenselaars is Associate Professor in the English Department at Utrecht University. He is the author of Images of Englishmen and Foreigners in the Drama of Shakespeare and his Contemporaries (1992). He is also editor and co-editor of a number of collections including Shakespeare's Italy (1993, revised edition 1997), Reclamations of Shakespeare (1994), and 400 Years of Shakespeare in Europe (2003). Dennis Kennedy's books include The Spectator and the Spectacle: Audiences in Modernity and Postmodernity, The Oxford Encyclopedia of Theatre and Performance, Looking at Shakespeare: A Visual History of Twentieth-Century Performance, Foreign Shakespeare, and Granville Barker and the Dream of Theatre. Shakespeare in Asia: Contemporary Performance is due late 2009 (edited with Yong Li Lan). He has twice been a fellow of the National Endowment for the Humanities in the USA, twice won the Freedley Award for theatre history, received the Chancellor's Distinguished Research Award at the University of Pittsburgh, the Berkeley Fellowship at Trinity College Dublin, and was elected to the Royal Irish Academy and Academia Europaea. His own plays have been performed in New York, London, and many other places, and he has frequently worked as a dramaturg and director in professional theatres.
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