The Winter's Tale is Shakespeare's most perfectly realized tragi-comedy, as notable for its tragic intensity as for its comic grace and, throughout, for the richness and complexity of its poetry. It concludes, moreover, with the most daring and moving reconciliation scene in all Shakespeare's plays. Though the title may suggest an escapist fantasy, recent criticism has seen in the play a profoundly realist psychology and a powerful commentary on the violence implicit in family relationships and deep, long-lasting friendships. Stephen Orgel's edition considers the play in relation to Renaissance conceptions of both dramatic genre and the family, traces the changing critical and theatrical attitudes towards it, and places its psychological and dramatic conflicts within the Jacobean cultural and political context. The commentary pays special attention to the play's linguistic complexity, and the edition also includes a complete reprint of Shakespeare's source, Pandosto, by Robert Greene.
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One of Shakespeare's most haunting and enigmatic late plays, The Winter's Tale is a fine example of Shakespeare's fascination with the dramatic genre of "romance": the portrayal of magical lands, familial conflict and exile, and final reunion and reconciliation. Drawing on Robert Green's story Pandosto, Shakespeare play tells the story of the middle-aged Leontes, king of Sicilia, and his childhood friend Polixenes, the king of Bohemia. Leontes mistakenly believes that his friend is having an affair with his wife, Hermione. In his jealousy, and consumed by "tremor cordis", he tries to murder Polixenes, who flees, and accuses his wife of adultery. Hermione gives birth to a baby girl, Perdita, who Leontes denounces as illegitimate, and casts her out into the wilderness. Hermione is ultimately proved innocent, but her son, Mamillius, dies of grief. Hermione collapses, apparently dead, and Leontes is left to pick up the tragic consequences of his actions. Time passes, and the action moves to Bohemia, where the lost child Perdita has grown up a shepherdess in the midst of "great creating nature". The final scenes of the play draw towards resolution and reconciliation between Leontes, Hermione and their lost daughter, culminating in one of Shakespeare's most moving final scenes. One of Shakespeare's most consummate plays, The Winter's Tale is a fascinating study of male insecurity and the relations between art and nature. -- Jerry Brotton.Review:
a valuable edition of 'The Winter's Tale'...His accounts of language and of motivation are particularly illuminating and level-headed. - The Review of English Studies, Vol. 49, No. 194, 1998.
a valuable edition of The Winter's Tale ... this is a well-focused and helpful edition. ( Paul Hammond, Review of English Studies)
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Book Description Penguin Classics, 1981. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Edition Unstated. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0140707166
Book Description Book Condition: Brand New. Book Condition: Brand New. Bookseller Inventory # 97801407071681.0
Book Description Penguin Classics, US, 1981. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Reprint. Penguin Classics 1981 Reprint New/ pages lightly tanned. Bookseller Inventory # 312274
Book Description Penguin Classics, 1981. Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 0140707166