Faith in Shakespeare

Author: Richard C. McCoy

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0190218657

Category: Drama

Page: 194

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Speculation about Shakespeare's own religious beliefs and responses to the Reformation have dominated discussions of faith in the playwright's work for decades. As a result, we often lose sight of what's truly important-the plays themselves. By focusing on those plays in several succinct, fluently written chapters, Richard McCoy reminds us of the spell-binding power inherent in works like Othello, As You Like It, and The Winter's Tale and shows why they continue to cause audiences to gladly exercise what Samuel Taylor Coleridge called the "willing suspension of disbelief." Faith in Shakespeare ruminates on what it means to believe in the Bard's plays, exploring how their plots can be both preposterous and gripping, and how their characters seem more substantial and enduring than the people surrounding us in the theater. Informed by Coleridge's "poetic faith," the book discusses what this concept shares with religious faith and how it departs from recent historicist approaches to the dramatist's work. Faith in Shakespeare concentrates more on text than context, finding the afterlife of Shakespeare's language more vivid and engaging than theological controversies. The book confirms its convictions in literature's intrinsic powers by exploring the causes for our paradoxical belief in theater's potent but manifest illusions. Plays that ask their audience to "awake your faith" or "believe then, if you please" ultimately enable us to "mind true things by what their mockeries be." Rather than faith in God or the supernatural, McCoy argues that faith in Shakespeare is sustained and explained only by the complex, subtle, and entirely human power of poetic eloquence and dramatic performance.

Believing in Shakespeare

Studies in Longing

Author: Claire McEachern

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 1108422241

Category: Drama

Page: N.A

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A discussion of the connections between believing in Shakespeare's play and a post-Reformation understanding of salvation.

Faith and Folly in Shakespeare's Romantic Comedies

Author: R. Chris Hassel, Jr.

Publisher: University of Georgia Press

ISBN: 0820338532

Category: Religion

Page: 272

View: 4295

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An enduring debate among scholars has focused on the degree to which Shakespeare's plays are indebted to the Christian culture in which they were created and the manner of demonstrating that indebtedness. R. Chris Hassel, Jr. points out informed allusions to familiar Pauline and Erasmian Christian passages and themes present in Love's Labor's Lost, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Much Ado about Nothing, As You Like It, Twelfth Night, and The Merchant of Venice. He argues that not only did Shakespeare's audience understand these allusions but also that these allusions led the audience to recognize their pertinence to the playwright's uniquely Christian comic vision. Furthermore, Hassel feels this understanding of the relationship between Shakespeare's comic artistry and Christianity leads to a greater appreciation of the plays.

Shakespeare and Early Modern Religion

Author: David Loewenstein,Michael Witmore

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 1316239810

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: N.A

View: 7794

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Written by an international team of literary scholars and historians, this collaborative volume illuminates the diversity of early modern religious beliefs and practices in Shakespeare's England, and considers how religious culture is imaginatively reanimated in Shakespeare's plays. Fourteen new essays explore the creative ways Shakespeare engaged with the multifaceted dimensions of Protestantism, Catholicism, non-Christian religions including Judaism and Islam, and secular perspectives, considering plays such as Hamlet, Julius Caesar, King John, King Lear, Macbeth, Measure for Measure, A Midsummer Night's Dream and The Winter's Tale. The collection is of great interest to readers of Shakespeare studies, early modern literature, religious studies, and early modern history.

Shakespeare, the Earl, and the Jesuit

Author: John Klause

Publisher: Associated University Presse

ISBN: 9780838641378

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 339

View: 5004

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The name of the Jesuit Robert Southwell has been linked with Shakespeare's, but vaguely and tentatively. The name of Henry Wriothesley, 3rd earl of Southampton, has perennially been linked with Shakespeare's. This book offers reasons for believing in a relationship among these 3 men, who were kinsmen as their contemporaries understood the term.

Special Section, Shakespeare and Montaigne Revisited

Author: Graham Bradshaw,T. G. Bishop,Peter Holbrook

Publisher: Ashgate Publishing, Ltd.

ISBN: 9780754655893

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 405

View: 9091

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This year including a special section on "Shakespeare and Montaigne Revisited," The Shakespearean International Yearbook continues to provide an annual survey of important issues and developments in contemporary Shakespeare studies. Contributors to this issue come from the US and the UK, Canada, Sweden, Japan and Australia. This issue includes an interview with veteran American actor Alvin Epstein during his recent acclaimed performance of King Lear for the Actors' Shakespeare project in Boston.

The Heart of His Mystery

Shakespeare and the Catholic Faith in England Under Elizabeth and James

Author: Waterfield John Waterfield,John Waterfield

Publisher: iUniverse

ISBN: 1440143439

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 682

View: 5550

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Shakespeare has traditionally been viewed as Queen Elizabeth's 'poet laureate', and as the official mouthpiece of the Elizabethan age. But the Elizabethan world was torn apart by the religious divisions initiated by the Reformation, and vitiated by the government's merciless persecution of Catholics. As it was the victors who wrote the history, the English Reformation has been portrayed as a peaceful transition enjoying majority support, when in fact it was nothing of the kind. Elizabeth's regime was a police state which sanctioned the use of torture, where Catholic priests and those who harboured them were liable to summary and bloody execution. The persecution of Catholics was continued by James I, evoking the violent response of the Gunpowder Plot. "The Heart of His Mystery" examines Shakespeare's life and work against this background. There is strong biographical evidence that he was himself a Catholic, and a detailed survey of his plays and poems shows that his imagination was intimately bound up with his religious faith. When we realise that his human compassion grew from his membership in a persecuted community, we can glimpse the mystery he has encrypted in his works and we come closer to understanding the hidden heart of Shakespeare the man.

A Search for Meaning

Critical Essays on Early Modern Literature

Author: Paula Harms Payne

Publisher: Peter Lang

ISBN: 9780820471129

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 159

View: 9285

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In its exploration of drama, poetry, and prose, this collection of nine essays invites students, teachers, and scholars to rethink their evaluations of Shakespeare, Milton, Sidney, Jonson, and other British writers of the Early Modern period. Using a formalist approach, " A Search for Meaning" establishes new critical perspectives that are dependent on close readings of the text and current secondary research and which carefully consider reader's reactions.

Emblems in Shakespeare's Last Plays

Author: Kwang Soon Cho

Publisher: University Press of Amer

ISBN: N.A

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 169

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The purpose of this study is to examine emblems in Shakespeare's last plays Pericles, Cymbeline, The Winter's Tale, The Tempest, and Henry VIII. Emblems serve two purposes. First, the structure of emblems contributes to the playwright's experiment with emblematic modes of representation and also depends on the correlational relationship between the picture and the epigram in an emblem. Second, emblems assist the playwright in communicating moral and philosophical ideas to the audience. In the last plays, morals lurk behind allegorical or symbolic emblems. Through emblems the playwright addresses important moral, philosophical, and political questions such as fate and providence, reason and passion, faith, time, and divine right. A full understanding of the last plays as a whole is difficult without a knowledge of emblems in relation to the plays' structures and morals. This study approaches the last plays from this perspective."

Shakespeare Survey

Author: Stanley Wells

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521523776

Category: Drama

Page: 272

View: 8881

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The first fifty volumes of this yearbook of Shakespeare studies are being reissued in paperback.

Let Wonder Seem Familiar

Shakespeare and the Romance Ending

Author: R.S. White

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 0567199541

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 203

View: 7919

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Dr White examines the ways in which Shakespeare uses formal conventions from romance throughout his writing career, especially in giving formal completion to a play without forfeiting the 'open-ended' sense of life's complexity. In his romantic comedies these conventions are modified to imply that the cosy womb of marriage is not the end of lovers' lives; in the 'problem' comedies they are used to challenge the artifice of the comic ending; in some tragedies they are used to provide an ideal of fulfilment which has been destroyed by the tragic events - and in the last plays or 'romances' they are used to invoke the full sense of life's continuing comprehensiveness.

Shakespeare beyond Doubt

Evidence, Argument, Controversy

Author: Paul Edmondson,Stanley Wells

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 1107354935

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: N.A

View: 5485

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Did Shakespeare write Shakespeare? The authorship question has been much treated in works of fiction, film and television, provoking interest all over the world. Sceptics have proposed many candidates as the author of Shakespeare's works, including Francis Bacon, Christopher Marlowe and Edward De Vere, the seventeenth Earl of Oxford. But why and how did the authorship question arise and what does surviving evidence offer in answer to it? This authoritative, accessible and frequently entertaining book sets the debate in its historical context and provides an account of its main protagonists and their theories. Presenting the authorship of Shakespeare's works in relation to historiography, psychology and literary theory, twenty-three distinguished scholars reposition and develop the discussion. The book explores the issues in the light of biographical, textual and bibliographical evidence to bring fresh perspectives to an intriguing cultural phenomenon.

The Cambridge Companion to Shakespeare on Film

Author: Russell Jackson

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 110749530X

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 368

View: 6180

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Film adaptations of Shakespeare's plays are increasingly popular and now figure prominently in the study of his work and its reception. This Companion is a lively collection of critical and historical essays on the films adapted from, and inspired by, Shakespeare's plays. Chapters have been revised and updated from the first edition to include the most recent films and scholarship. An international team of leading scholars discuss Shakespearean films from a variety of perspectives: as works of art in their own right; as products of the international movie industry; and as the work of particular directors from Laurence Olivier and Orson Welles to Franco Zeffirelli and Kenneth Branagh. They also consider specific issues such as the portrayal of Shakespeare's women and the supernatural. The emphasis is on feature films for cinema, rather than television, with strong coverage of Hamlet, Richard III, Macbeth, King Lear and Romeo and Juliet.

Godless Shakespeare

Author: Eric S. Mallin

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 1441103481

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 144

View: 3387

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Godless Shakespeare is the first book to discuss Shakespeare's plays from an atheist perspective. Although it is clear that Shakespeare engaged with and deployed much of his culture's broadly religious interests - his language is shot through with biblical quotations, priestly sermonizing and Christian imagery - Mallin argues that there is a profound absence of or hostility to God in his plays. Following Dante's three part structure for The Divine Comedy - Hell represents expressions of religious faith in Shakespeare's plays, Purgatory sets out more sceptical positions, and Heaven shows articulations of godlessness - Mallin traces a spiritual ascent from the unthinkingly devout to the atheistically spiritual. This polemical, vigorous account focuses on the moral and spiritual dilemmas of major characters, developing the often subtle transitions between belief, scepticism and atheism. Finally, Godless Shakespeare argues for the liberating potential of unbelief.

Shakespeare in Opera, Ballet, Orchestral Music, and Song

An Introduction to Music Inspired by the Bard

Author: Arthur Graham

Publisher: Edwin Mellen Press

ISBN: 9780773485150

Category: Music

Page: 213

View: 7363

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This work is unique in the field: the reader is introduced to music from several centuries and to five of the most popular plays in great detail (Macbeth, Romeo & Juliet, The Merry Wives of Windsor, Othello, A Midsummer Night's Dream). Other plays are discussed (1 & 2 Henry IV, Henry V, The Taming of the Shrew, The Merchant of Venice). It contains no musical notation and assumes no previous knowledge of music or of Shakespeare. It can be used in the classroom by a professor of English or of music. Suggested CD and video recordings are listed and keyed by page number to examples in the book.