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This is an auction for SHAKESPEARE: A LIFE by Park Honan.

"So little evidence of Shakespeare's life exists that biographers have had to resort to sometimes far-fetched guesswork to flesh out a vivid chronicle of his days. Many of them would benefit from the healthy dose of common sense evident in Honan's latest critical study. Synthesizing documentary material on Renaissance England with the latest scholarship,Honan attempts to link the Bard's life experiences with his literary representations. In an examination of Shakespeare's schooling, Honan refutes the oft-cited remark that he had "small Latin and less Greek" and finds analogies to his student years in such plays as The Merry Wives of Windsor and Hamlet. Honan vibrantly depicts Renaissance urban life, where "the theatre [was] a quick-paced, disenchanting funfair; with jigs, dancing, dumb-shows and clowns' acts interlaced with drama." Despite his insistence on historical context, however, Honan reserves most of his critical energies for the poet's high tragedies. In Hamlet, "pathos arises from his hero's idealization of a prior normalcy"; Othello contains a "flawless structure of feeling"; and Antony and Cleopatra investigates "non-literal truth, in myth, fable, and implicit connections between historical epochs." Studies of Shakespeare frequently reflect hotly contested trends in literary criticism; this biography's value, by contrast, lies in its responsibly researched, unflinching look at what is indisputably the artist's real achievement:"
- Publishers Weekly (US)

Very favourable reviews on

Oxford University Press hardback 1998.

479 pages + 16 pages of illustrations.

Near new condition.

The cost of shipping is $5.50.

There is of course no charge for shipping if you collect this book from my shop in Palmerston North following the auction.

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  • Seller location: Palmerston North, Manawatu, NZ

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