Love's Labour's Lost

Love's Labour's Lost

by John S. Pendergast
     
 

Love's Labour's Lost has had a puzzling history. Until the 1950s it was generally considered one of Shakespeare's earliest plays, and it was one of his most vilified until the 20th century. Perhaps more than any other Shakespearean play, it explores the power and limitations of language, and this blatant concern for language led many early critics to believe

…  See more details below

Overview

Love's Labour's Lost has had a puzzling history. Until the 1950s it was generally considered one of Shakespeare's earliest plays, and it was one of his most vilified until the 20th century. Perhaps more than any other Shakespearean play, it explores the power and limitations of language, and this blatant concern for language led many early critics to believe that it was the work of a playwright just learning his art. Because of its linguistic density, it is one of Shakespeare's most demanding plays, and this difficulty helps account for its initial unpopularity. But modern critics have begun to study the play in earnest and it is now one of Shakespeare's most popular works. This reference is a thorough introduction to the play's origins and legacy.

The volume provides a full overview of all aspects of the play, from its genesis to modern productions, and scholarship. The book begins with a summary of the play's textual history, including the problems of dating it accurately. It then discusses the cultural, social, and ideological contexts that inform the drama and considers some of Shakespeare's plausible sources. The play's dramatic structure, including its language, is examined at length, along with its various themes. The reference then recounts its critical and scholarly reception, and a final chapter surveys the play's performance history. Chapters cite works for further reading, and the volume concludes with a selected bibliography of major studies.

Read More

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780313313158
Publisher:
ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
Publication date:
10/30/2001
Series:
Greenwood Guides to Shakespeare Series
Pages:
196
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.56(d)

Meet the Author

JOHN S. PENDERGAST is Assistant Professor of English at Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville. His publications have appeared in such journals as ELH, Studies in Philology, and Extrapolation.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >