By Lisa Jardine
Reading Shakespeare Historically is a passionate, provocative book by one of the most renowned and popular Renaissance scholars writing today. Charting ten years of critical development, these challenging, witty essays shed new light on Renaissance studies. It also raises intriguing questions about how the culture and history of the past illuminates the key social and political issues of today. Lisa Jardine re-reads Renaissance drama in its historical and cultural context, from laws of defamation in Othello to the competing loyalties of companionate marriage and male friendship in The Changeling . In doing so she reveals a wealth of new insights, sometimes surprising but always original and engrossing. At the same time, these essays also provide a fascinating account of the rise of feminist scholarship since the 1980s and the diversifying of `new historicist' approaches over the same period.
- New York