This Is Shakespeare

This Is Shakespeare: How to Read the World's Greatest Playwright

Non-Fiction, Screen & Performing Arts, Theatre, Shakespeare
Paperback Published on: 02/04/2020
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Bookseller Reviews

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This Is Shakespeare
Shakespeare From Your Sofa
Indespensible for fans of the Bard - a recontextualisation of Shakespeare's work for modern audiences. Its pocket size means it's theatre-visit friendly (w... READ MORE
Nessa Urquhart
This Is Shakespeare
Incredibly fascinating.
'All these examples show how Shakespeare can resonate in particular circumstances, and how we can bring to the plays our own emotional, political, ideologi... READ MORE
Jamie Lee at Trafford Centre

Synopsis

'I admire the freshness and attack of her writing, the passion and curiosity that light up the page. The book does something very important - it makes you impatient to see or re-read the plays at once' - Hilary Mantel

A genius and prophet whose timeless works encapsulate the human condition like no others. A writer who surpassed his contemporaries in vision, originality and literary mastery. Who wrote like an angel, putting it all so much better than anyone else.

Is this Shakespeare? Well, sort of.

But it doesn't really tell us the whole truth. So much of what we say about Shakespeare is either not true, or just not relevant, deflecting us from investigating the challenges of his inconsistencies and flaws. This electrifying new book thrives on revealing, not resolving, the ambiguities of Shakespeare's plays and their changing topicality.

It introduces an intellectually, theatrically and ethically exciting writer who engages with intersectionality as much as with Ovid, with economics as much as poetry: who writes in strikingly modern ways about individual agency, privacy, politics, celebrity and sex.

It takes us into a world of politicking and copy-catting, as we watch him emulating the blockbusters of Christopher Marlowe and Thomas Kyd, the Spielberg and Tarantino of their day; flirting with and skirting round the cut-throat issues of succession politics, religious upheaval and technological change. The Shakespeare in this book poses awkward questions rather than offering bland answers, always implicating us in working out what it might mean.

This is Shakespeare. And he needs your attention.

  • Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
  • ISBN: 9780241361634
  • Number of pages: 368
  • Weight: 212g
  • Dimensions: 181 x 111 x 20 mm

Customer Reviews

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This Is Shakespeare
Contemporary Shakespeare
At last, a crossover book for the general reader which actually treats Shakespeare in the way that he is thought about, taught, researched and written abou... READ MORE
Roman Clodia
This Is Shakespeare
Contemporary Shakespeare
At last, a crossover book for the general reader which actually treats Shakespeare in the way that he is thought about, taught, researched and written abou... READ MORE
Roman Clodia
This Is Shakespeare
This should be essential reading!
This book is a fantastic introduction to academic writing. Even though I'm studying for my master's now, I felt like Smith guided me through Shakespeare's ... READ MORE
Amy Thomson