Substitute Shakespeares, released in 1985, shook up the area of Shakespearean reports, demythologising Shakespeare and using new theories to the research of his paintings. replacement Shakespeares: quantity 2 investigates Shakespearean feedback over a decade later, introducing new debates and new theorists into the frame.
Both proven students and new names look right here, supplying a extensive cross-section of up to date Shakespearean experiences, together with psychoanalysis, sexual and gender politics, race and new historicism.
Alternative Shakespeares: quantity 2 represents the leading edge of latest Shakespearean stories. This urgently-needed addition to a vintage paintings of literary feedback is one that academics and students will welcome.
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Extra resources for Alternative Shakespeares, Volume 2
III The need for a more materialist apprehension of historical heterogeneity confronts new historicism as well as certain varieties of feminism. In one of the more cogent critiques of the movement, James Holstun (like many others) records his dissatisfaction with the various manifestations of a ‘will-tototalization’ in new historicist approaches to culture. Unlike others, however, he neither attributes such totalizing tendencies to a submerged metaphysical or political agenda nor does he pretend to have in his own pocket a model of cultural criticism that does not ‘explicitly or implicitly work from some model of cultural totality’ (Holstun 1989:198).
And yet characterizations of this essay in particular, and new historicism in general, repeatedly refer to a supposed argument that any resistance is impossible. A particularizing argument about the subject position projected by a set of plays is at once simplified and turned into a universal 28 ALTERNATIVE SHAKESPEARES 2 principle from which contingency and hence history itself is erased. (Greenblatt 1990a: 75) I feel the need to dwell on this particular essay at some length because it has indeed served, in distorted and simplified form, as a template through which all too many commentators have viewed new historicism in general.
Beautiful, ageless, mistress of all the arts of love, mysterious, Eastern, magical, Shakespeare’s Egyptian Queen transmutes Plutarch’s calculating courtesan into myth, becoming in the process the origin of a succession of recreations by George Bernard Shaw and Cecil B. de Mille, for example, as well as reinterpretations by Vivien Leigh and Elizabeth Taylor in some of the most expensive movies ever made. From the moment of her first meeting with Antony, when she rejects his invitation to supper and substitutes her own, Shakespeare’s Cleopatra exercises a command over his will that proves virtually irresistible.