Shakespeare's Politics

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Overview


Taking the classical view that the political shapes man's consciousness, Allan Bloom considers Shakespeare as a profoundly political Renaissance dramatist. He aims to recover Shakespeare's ideas and beliefs and to make his work once again a recognized source for the serious study of moral and political problems.

In essays looking at Julius Caesar, Othello, and The Merchant of Venice, Bloom shows how Shakespeare presents a picture of man that does not assume privileged access for only literary criticism. With this claim, he argues that political philosophy offers a comprehensive framework within which the problems of the Shakespearean heroes can be viewed. In short, he argues that Shakespeare was an eminently political author. Also included is an essay by Harry V. Jaffa on the limits of politics in King Lear.

"A very good book indeed . . . one which can be recommended to all who are interested in Shakespeare." —G. P. V. Akrigg

"This series of essays reminded me of the scope and depth of Shakespeare's original vision. One is left with the impression that Shakespeare really had figured out the answers to some important questions many of us no longer even know to ask."-Peter A. Thiel, CEO, PayPal, Wall Street Journal

Allan Bloom was the John U. Nef Distinguished Service Professor on the Committee on Social Thought and the co-director of the John M. Olin Center for Inquiry into the Theory and Practice of Democracy at the University of Chicago. Harry V. Jaffa is professor emeritus at Claremont McKenna College and Claremont Graduate School.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780226060415
  • Publisher: University of Chicago Press
  • Publication date: 12/28/1996
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 150
  • Product dimensions: 5.25 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

At his death in 1992, Allan Bloom was the John U. Nef Distinguished Service Professor in the Committee on Social Thought and in the College at the University of Chicago. He is the author of several books, including The Closing of the American Mind. Harry Jaffa is Henry Salvatori Research Professor of Political Philosophy Emeritus at Claremont McKenna College.

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Table of Contents


1: Introduction: Political Philosophy and Poetry
2: On Christian and Jew: The Merchant of Venice
3: Cosmopolitan Man and the Political Community: Othello
4: The Morality of the Pagan Hero: Julius Caesar
5: The Limits of Politics: King Lear, Act I, Scene i
Harry V. Jaffa
Acknowledgments
Index
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