William Shakespeare: Facts and Fictions

ABC-CLIO. (Historical Studies of Urban America). Oct. 2020. 213p. ISBN 9781440866746. $63. REF
“The life of William Shakespeare has inspired many myths, misconceptions, and fictions,” observes King (Gannon Univ.) as, chapter by chapter, he explores ten of the most important questions regarding Shakespeare. These include: Did he really write the works attributed to him? Was he gay or bisexual? Was he secretly Roman Catholic? Was he poorly educated? Did he reject his wife and family? Were his plays all recycled? Was he a solitary genius whose talents cannot be explained? Did he and his colleagues and audiences see tragedies as more important than comedies? Are his plays elite and his language incomprehensible for contemporary readers and audiences? Should his plays be produced with Renaissance costumes and staging? Each chapter looks clearly at one question, asking what people think happened, how it became popular, and what really happened, based on historical and contemporary scholarship. Primary sources (such as Shakespeare’s will) are included in many chapters, as are suggestions for further reading.
VERDICT An ideal ready-reference guide to understanding one of the greatest—and most popular
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