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Tyrant – Shakespeare on Politics Paperback – 19 Apr 2019

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; Reprint edition (19 April 2019)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393356973
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393356977
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 1.5 x 21.1 cm
  • Boxed-product Weight: 181 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 181,871 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product description


Elegant and deftly written.--Eliot A. Cohen

Rarely have these blood-soaked creatures seemed so recognizably human and so contemporary.--John Lithgow

Greenblatt is especially fine on the mechanisms of tyranny, its ecology, so to speak, leaving one deeply moved all over again by Shakespeare's profound and direct understanding of what it is to be human--which includes, alas, being a tyrant.--Simon Callow

Greenblatt shows us not only that Shakespeare's writings can serve as a brilliant guide to the mess of our current politics but also that he--Greenblatt, that is--is perfectly well able to give us an account of them.

Shakespeare lived five centuries ago, yet Greenblatt's book has the feel of a series of urgent and very contemporary dispatches.

Mr. Greenblatt breaks with the traditional assumption that Shakespeare must have been an uncritical admirer of monarchy. The Shakespeare that this book reveals is not only able to tell a bad king from a good but willing to raise serious doubts about monarchy as a regime.

An engaging study of some of the most eloquent despots on stage.

Shakespeare's fascination with the tyrannical impulse, in domestic as well as political settings, is undeniable and is acutely observed by Greenblatt. The overlap between the private and public spheres is always catastrophic, as is the tyrant's blind, psychotic fury at resistance when pure obedience is expected, an emotion the plays release and explore compulsively.

About the Author

Stephen Greenblatt (Ph.D. Yale) is Cogan University Professor of the Humanities at Harvard University. Also General Editor of The Norton Anthology of English Literature, he is the author of eleven books, including Tyrant, The Rise and Fall of Adam and Eve: The Story that Created Us, The Swerve: How the World Became Modern (winner of the 2011 National Book Award and the 2012 Pulitzer Prize); Shakespeare's Freedom; Will in the World: How Shakespeare Became Shakespeare; Hamlet in Purgatory; Marvelous Possessions: The Wonder of the New World; Learning to Curse: Essays in Early Modern Culture; and Renaissance Self-Fashioning: From More to Shakespeare. He has edited seven collections of criticism, including Cultural Mobility: A Manifesto, and is a founding coeditor of the journal Representations. His honors include the MLA's James Russell Lowell Prize, for both Shakespearean Negotiations: The Circulation of Social Energy in Renaissance England and The Swerve, the Sapegno Prize, the Distinguished Humanist Award from the Mellon Foundation, the Wilbur Cross Medal from the Yale University Graduate School, the William Shakespeare Award for Classical Theatre, the Erasmus Institute Prize, two Guggenheim Fellowships, and the Distinguished Teaching Award from the University of California, Berkeley. He was president of the Modern Language Association of America and is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, and the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

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16 August 2018
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Thomas H Kloecker
5.0 out of 5 starsThe content is excellent, which is the same in both
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Thomas H Kloecker
5.0 out of 5 starsExcellent read. For your information
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5.0 out of 5 starsGreat Examination of Shakespeare's Tyrants
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Paul M.
5.0 out of 5 starsBrilliant look at two worlds on the same path.
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Daniel Burton
5.0 out of 5 starsThe most enjoyable way to learn about tyranny
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