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Now in a new edition, Lukas Erne's groundbreaking study argues that Shakespeare, apart from being a playwright who wrote theatrical texts for the stage, was also a literary dramatist who produced reading texts for the page. Examining the evidence from early published playbooks, Erne argues that Shakespeare wrote many of his plays with a readership in mind and that these "literary" texts would have been abridged for the stage because they were too long for performance. The variant early texts of Romeo and Juliet, Henry V, and Hamlet are shown to reveal important insights into the different media for which Shakespeare designed his plays. This revised and updated edition includes a new and substantial preface that reviews and intervenes in the controversy the study has triggered and lists reviews, articles, and books which respond to or build on the first edition.Read more
- The Times Literary Supplement 'Book of the Year', first published in 2003, is now updated in a second edition, appealing to those who are interested in recent changes in thinking about Shakespeare
- Published to coincide with the publication of Erne's follow-up study, Shakespeare and the Book Trade; jointly, the closely related and co-ordinated studies give access to Erne's seminal work on 'readerly Shakespeare'
- Includes a new preface which engages with responses to the study since it was first published, giving readers access to a key debate in Shakespeare studies over the last ten years
Reviews & endorsements
"This is an excellent book … to learn much of what is known about the quarto and Folio texts of the eighteen plays published in both formats, with special attention given to the shorter quartos. Erne presents his tremendous learning on this subject in a very understandable way."
Michael P. Jensen, The Shakespeare Newsletter
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- Edition: 2nd Edition
- Date Published: June 2013
- format: Paperback
- isbn: 9781107685062
- length: 323 pages
- dimensions: 228 x 150 x 17 mm
- weight: 0.49kg
- contains: 12 b/w illus.
- availability: Available
Table of Contents
Preface to the second edition
Part I. Publication:
1. The legitimation of printed playbooks in Shakespeare's time
2. The making of 'Shakespeare'
3. Shakespeare and the publication of his plays (I): the late sixteenth century
4. Shakespeare and the publication of his plays (II): the early seventeenth century
5. The players' alleged opposition to print
Part II. Texts:
6. Why size matters: 'the two hours' traffic of our stage' and the length of Shakespeare's plays
7. Editorial policy and the length of Shakespeare's plays
8. 'Bad quartos' and their origins: Romeo and Juliet, Henry V, and Hamlet
9. Theatricality, literariness, and the texts of Romeo and Juliet, Henry V, and Hamlet
Appendix A: the plays of Shakespeare and his contemporaries in print, 1584–1623
Appendix B: Heminge and Condell's 'Stolne, and surreptitious copies' and the Pavier quartos
Appendix C: Shakespeare and the circulation of dramatic manuscripts.
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