Shakespeare's Sonnets / Edition 1

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Overview


The sonnets are among the most accomplished and fascinating poems in the English language. They are central to an understanding of Shakespeare's work as a poet and poetic dramatist, and while their autobiographical relevance is uncertain, no account of Shakespeare's life can afford to ignore them. So many myths and superstitions have arisen around these poems, relating for example to their possible addressees, to their coherence as a sequence, to their dates of composition, to their relation to other poetry of the period and to Shakespeare's plays, that even the most na�ve reader will find it difficult to read them with an innocent mind. Shakespeare's Sonnets dispels the myths and focuses on the poems. Considering different possible ways of reading the Sonnets, Wells and Edmondson place them in a variety of literary and dramatic contexts--in relation to other poetry of the period, to Shakespeare's plays, as poems for performance, and in relation to their reception and reputation. Selected sonnets are discussed in depth, but the book avoids the jargon of theoretical criticism. Shakespeare's Sonnets is an exciting contribution to the Oxford Shakespeare Topics, ideal for students and the general reader interested in these intriguing poems.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Shakespeare is again the hottest ticket in town: he has been voted the person of the millennium in Great Britain, while an Oscar-nominated film about his love life is burning up box offices. Along with being the world's greatest playwright, his unparalleled genius for rhyme and meter make him also one of the greatest poets, evidenced by the 154 sonnets he penned throughout his life. This beautiful hardcover offers them all, with illustrations and an index of first lines. A real top-shelf edition.
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This lovely little volume contains all 154 of Shakespeare's sonnets, all strikingly beautiful poetry that was written throughout the Bard's life. Each sonnet is presented on its own page with a surrounding leaf design, so the sonnets stand on their own as individual works. Love, betrayal, despair, commitment, regret, spirituality, life, and death are explored in this eloquent poems penned by the greatest playwright and poet in the English language. Contains an index of first lines. 5" x 7 1/2".
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199256112
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 12/9/2004
  • Series: Oxford Shakespeare Topics Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 208
  • Product dimensions: 7.90 (w) x 5.30 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Stanley Wells is a leading authority on Shakespeare whose books include Shakespeare: For All Time, Shakespeare: An Oxford Guide (co-editor), and The Oxford Companion to Shakespeare (co-editor)

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Table of Contents

1 The early publication of the sonnets 3
2 The history and emergence of the sonnet as a literary form 13
3 The sonnets in relation to Shakespeare's life 22
4 The form of Shakespeare's sonnets 28
5 The artistry of Shakespeare's sonnets 47
6 Concerns of the sonnets 63
7 The sonnets as theatre 82
8 The place of 'A lover's complaint' 105
9 The later publication of the sonnets 117
10 The critical reputation of the sonnets 131
11 The sonnets and later writers 145
12 The sonnets in performance 166
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