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Hamlet in His Modern Guises
Author: Alexander Welsh

ISBN: 9780691050935
Format: Hardcover
Number Of Pages: 190
Published: 17 January 2001
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.9 x 15.2 x 1.2
Description:


Focusing on Shakespeare's "Hamlet" as foremost a study of grief, Alexander Welsh offers a powerful analysis of its protagonist as the archetype of the modern hero. For over two centuries writers and critics have viewed Hamlet's persona as a fascinating blend of self-consciousness, guilt, and wit. Yet in order to understand more deeply the modernity of this Shakespearean hero, Welsh first situates "Hamlet" within the context of family and mourning as it was presented in other revenge tragedies of Shakespeare's time. Revenge, he maintains, appears as a function of mourning rather than an end in itself. Welsh also reminds us that the mourning of a son for his father may not always be sincere. This book relates the problem of dubious mourning to Hamlet's ascendancy as an icon of Western culture, which began late in the eighteenth century, a time when the thinking of past generations--or fathers--represented to many an obstacle to human progress.

Welsh reveals how Hamlet inspired some of the greatest practitioners of modernity's quintessential literary form, the novel. Goethe's "Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship," Scott's ...

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