Shakespeare's Dead: Stages of Death in Shakespeare's Playworlds

Palfrey, Simon, Smith, Emma

Published by Bodleian Library, University of Oxford
ISBN 10: 1851242473 / ISBN 13: 9781851242474
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This books chronicles the ingenious ways of dying in Shakespeare, from suicide to murder, and from workaday dagger to baroque pie recipe. Illustrated with contemporary images, it establishes the cultural, religious and social contexts for thinking about early modern death. Num Pages: 192 pages, 80 colour illustrations. BIC Classification: DDS; DSGS. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 210 x 210. . . 2016. Paperback. . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Bookseller Inventory #

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Synopsis: Four hundred years after Shakespeare?s death, his plays live on in theater and popular culture, given new life through countless innovative approaches to their performance and interpretation. Just as our enthusiasm for seeing the plays performed?and transformed?affirms their continued life, death scenes in Shakespeare?s plays tend to mark not an ending but a transformation of life.

Published to accompany a major exhibition at the Bodleian Library, University of Oxford, Shakespeare?s Dead documents the many ways Shakespeare?s characters meet their demise, from suicide to murder, from death by workaday dagger to the more creative method of being baked and fed to one?s family in a meat pie. Through these examples, Simon Palfrey and Emma Smith show Shakespeare?s mastery at choreographing death as a means of rediscovery. Some characters refuse to go quietly, dying in stages, as in Nick Bottom?s performance as Pyramus killing himself with much flourish in A Midsummer Night?s Dream. Others are remembered in elegies, and still others are resurrected or reappear as ghosts. Shakespeare?s death scenes also often speak to the boundaries between theater and everyday life, with funerals and scenes of mourning that are undercut by their staged inauthenticity.

Extensively illustrated with contemporary drawings and images from stage history, Shakespeare?s Dead takes readers through the playwright?s great death scenes and tragic figures, exploring in them the theme of life in death and delineating the cultural, religious, and social contexts.

About the Author: Simon Palfrey is professor of English and a fellow at Brasenose College, University of Oxford. His most recent books are Shakespeare?s Possible Worlds and Poor Tom: Living ?King Lear.? Emma Smith is a fellow in English at Hertford College, University of Oxford. She is the author of several books, including, most recently, The Making of Shakespeare's First Folio, also published by the Bodleian Library, University of Oxford. Together, they are the curators of the accompanying exhibition.

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Title: Shakespeare's Dead: Stages of Death in ...
Publisher: Bodleian Library, University of Oxford
Book Condition: New

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Book Description The Bodleian Library, United Kingdom, 2016. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 210 x 210 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Pyramus: Now die, die, die, die, die. [Dies] A Midsummer Night s Dream Shakespeare s Dead reveals the unique ways in which Shakespeare brings dying, death, and the dead to life. It establishes the cultural, religious and social contexts for thinking about early modern death, with particular reference to the plague which ravaged Britain during his lifetime, and against the divisive background of the Reformation. But it also shows how death on stage is different from death in real life. The dead come to life, ghosts haunt the living, and scenes of mourning are subverted by the fact that the supposed corpse still breathes. Shakespeare scripts his scenes of dying with extraordinary care. Famous final speeches - like Hamlet s The rest is silence , Mercutio s A plague o both your houses , or Richard III s My kingdom for a horse - are also giving crucial choices to the actors as to exactly how and when to die. Instead of the blank finality of death, we get a unique entrance into the loneliness or confusion of dying. Shakespeare s Dead tells of death-haunted heroes such as Macbeth and Hamlet, and death-teasing heroines like Juliet, Ophelia, and Cleopatra. It explores the fear of something after death , and characters terrifying visions of being dead. But it also uncovers the constant presence of death in Shakespeare s comedies, and how the grinning jester might be a leering skull in disguise. This book celebrates the paradox: the life in death in Shakespeare. Bookseller Inventory # AAH9781851242474

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Book Description The Bodleian Library, United Kingdom, 2016. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 210 x 210 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Pyramus: Now die, die, die, die, die. [Dies] A Midsummer Night s Dream Shakespeare s Dead reveals the unique ways in which Shakespeare brings dying, death, and the dead to life. It establishes the cultural, religious and social contexts for thinking about early modern death, with particular reference to the plague which ravaged Britain during his lifetime, and against the divisive background of the Reformation. But it also shows how death on stage is different from death in real life. The dead come to life, ghosts haunt the living, and scenes of mourning are subverted by the fact that the supposed corpse still breathes. Shakespeare scripts his scenes of dying with extraordinary care. Famous final speeches - like Hamlet s The rest is silence , Mercutio s A plague o both your houses , or Richard III s My kingdom for a horse - are also giving crucial choices to the actors as to exactly how and when to die. Instead of the blank finality of death, we get a unique entrance into the loneliness or confusion of dying. Shakespeare s Dead tells of death-haunted heroes such as Macbeth and Hamlet, and death-teasing heroines like Juliet, Ophelia, and Cleopatra. It explores the fear of something after death , and characters terrifying visions of being dead. But it also uncovers the constant presence of death in Shakespeare s comedies, and how the grinning jester might be a leering skull in disguise. This book celebrates the paradox: the life in death in Shakespeare. Bookseller Inventory # AAH9781851242474

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