Studying Shakespeare: A Guide to the Plays / Edition 1

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This engaging book draws on all of Shakespeare's plays to show they can still be used as a guide to life.

  • Introduces beginning students and general readers to Shakespeare's plays by highlighting the connections between the issues addressed by the plays and those of our own time.
  • Focuses on the characters, situations and stories in Shakespeare which are still familiar today.
  • Shows how Shakespeare's plays illustrate some of life's most familiar stories - love and obsession, parents and children, sex and politics, suffering and revenge
  • Makes Shakespeare’s plays accessible to the widest possible audience.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This brilliant and inspirational book offers new insight into the work and world of William Shakespeare and offers fresh demonstration of his relevance for our own lives and troubles. At once immensely erudite and extraordinarily accessible, Maguire shows how broken-hearts, dysfunctional families, domestic violence, and other personal and social problems, was all grist for Shakespeare's theatrical imagination. Alongside unflinching criticism of a world-gone-wrong, Shakespeare also offered his audiences solace and hope. The top book on Shakespeare this year, Studying Shakespeare should be on everyone's bookshelf and on The Times Best Seller list." Dypmna Callaghan

"Maguire's book is fiesty, informative and stimulating." Atlantis

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780631229858
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 8/11/2003
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 260
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Laurie Maguire is a Fellow of Magdalen College, Oxford and a Lecturer in English at Oxford University. She is the author of Shakespearean Suspect Texts (1996) and co-editor of Textual Formations and Reformations (1998), among other publications.

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Table of Contents



List Of Illustrations.

1. Private Life: Shakespeare And Selfhood:.

The Divided Self.

Comedy Of Errors; As You Like It.

Naming The Self.

Troilus And Cressida; Romeo And Juliet; Taming Of The Shrew.

The Self And Language.

Measure For Measure; Troilus And Cressida.

The National Self.

Othello; King Lear.

The Self At Play.

Love’s Labour’s Lost; Taming Of The Shrew.

2. Marital Life: Shakespeare And Romance:.

Love And Hazard.

Merchant Of Venice.

Love And Friendship.

Two Gentlemen Of Verona; Winter’s Tale; Two Noble Kinsmen.

Love And Madness.

Midsummer Night’s Dream; Cymbeline; All’s Well; Measure For Measure; Troilus And Cressida.

Marriage And Identity.

Comedy Of Errors; All’s Well; Taming Of The Shrew.

Love And Abuse.

The Taming Of The Shrew; Merry Wives Of Windsor; Othello; Troilus And Cressida.

3. Political Life: Shakespeare And Government:.

Acting Politics.

3 Henry 6; Richard 3; 1 Henry 4; 2 Henry 4; Henry 5; Coriolanus; Julius Caesar.

Surviving Politics.

Richard 2; Macbeth.

The Personal Versus The Political.

Richard 2; Henry 4; Henry 5.

4. Public Life: Shakespeare And Social Structures:.


Macbeth; Merchant Of Venice; Romeo And Juliet; Merry Wives Of Windsor; Timon Of Athens.

Women And Public Life.

Antony And Cleopatra; King John; Measure For Measure.


Titus Andronicus; Much Ado About Nothing; All’s Well.

5.Real Life: Shakespeare And Suffering:.

Mingled Yarns.

Twelfth Night; King Lear; Much Ado.


Hamlet; Twelfth Night.

The Family.

King Lear; Macbeth.

Anger And Revenge.

Titus Andronicus.


Cymbeline; Pericles; Winter’s Tale; Tempest; Henry 8; Two Noble Kinsmen.


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