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Shakespearean Suspect Texts
The 'Bad' Quartos and their Contexts

$54.99 (C)

  • Date Published: February 2007
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521033480

$ 54.99 (C)

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About the Authors
  • There are forty-one problematic play texts, variously classified as "bad quartos" or "memorial reconstructions," from Shakespeare's time. Textual criticism of these quartos has been fraught with assumption and contradiction. Maguire examines all the texts in detail. She deconstructs the theories of W.W. Greg and his followers, scrutinizing the methods by which critics diagnose texts as "bad," and examines the historical evidence for the concept of memorial reconstruction (compilation from the recollection of actors or spectators). The valuable contextual material includes fresh analysis of the New Bibliographers, the rise of English studies, Renaissance oral culture, and textual problems in nonsuspect texts. The assembly of textual information about all the suspect texts in tabular form makes the book an essential reference work.

    • Like Hope's book (see above) this has implications for the question of authorship and the reliability of many Shakespearean texts
    • The 43 tables are a handy ready-reference tool
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "...very considerably expands the sense of textual mobility, fluidity, and adaptability of all Renaissance drama. Highly recommended..." Choice

    "Her [Maguire's] argument against piratical reconstruction is convincing." SEL

    "Laurie Maguire's excellent book, Shakespearean Suspect Texts, is important for two main reasons: first, it reviews both the contributions and the limitations of the New Bibliographers...secondly, it examines the theory of memorial reconstruction carefully and rationally, providing useful distinctions and conclusions....lively, witty, and readable prose...." Jay L. Halio, Journal of English and Germanic Philology

    "It is a pleasure to read a successful book on an important and difficult subject by a scholar who carefully condenses and clearly expresses an immense amount of detail, a wide range of knowledge, and a perceptive understanding of play(book)s and the persons who make (and mar) makes significant contributions to twentieth-and twenty-first century Shakespearean and Renaissance dramatic scholarship that will be propagated through the work of others..." Tom Clayton, Shakespeare Quarterly

    "The study is filled both with precious gems...and with small nuggets...[Maguire] shines in a real intellectual forte..." Patrick Cheney, MSA Book Reviews

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    Product details

    • Date Published: February 2007
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521033480
    • length: 448 pages
    • dimensions: 228 x 152 x 30 mm
    • weight: 0.662kg
    • contains: 43 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    List of abbreviations
    Part I:
    1. Introduction
    2. The rise of the new bibliography
    3. Memorial reconstruction and its discontents
    4. Reporting speech, reconstructing texts
    5. Memory
    Part II:
    6. Introduction
    7. Diagnosing memorial reconstruction: the poem, the play, the text
    8. 'Tables … stored full'
    9. Conclusion

  • Author

    Laurie E. Maguire, University of Ottawa

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