By Robin Headlam Wells
Shakespeare on Masculinity is an important and original study of the way Shakespeare's plays engage with a subject that provoked bitter public dispute. Robin Headlam Wells argues that Shakespeare took a skeptical view of the militant-Protestant cult of heroic masculinity. Following a series of brilliant portraits of the dangerously charismatic warrior-hero, Shakespeare turned at the end of his writing career to a different kind of leader. Plays receiving close readings include The Tempest, Henry V, Troilus and Cressida, Hamlet, Othello, Macbeth, and Coriolanus.