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Shakespeare: A Life (Englisch) Gebundene Ausgabe – Oktober 1998


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Produktinformation

  • Gebundene Ausgabe: 479 Seiten
  • Verlag: Clarendon Press (Oktober 1998)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0198117922
  • ISBN-13: 978-0198117926
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 14 x 3,8 x 21,6 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 3.7 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (10 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 589.689 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
  • Komplettes Inhaltsverzeichnis ansehen

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Produktbeschreibungen

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Atheist, homosexual, rebel, ladies man, Tory, Catholic: the varieties of "Shakespeare" on offer since the first printed biography of the Bard appeared in 1709 are profuse and often bizarre. The late Ted Hughes even claimed that Shakespeare was a shaman, who visited the former Poet Laureate in a dream to dictate Hughes' (or Shakespeare's?) preposterous Shakespeare and the Goddess of Complete Being. It therefore comes as some relief to read Park Honan's Shakespeare: A Life and find that it eschews the wilder side of Shakespearean biography.

Honan's book is the result of more than 10 years of research into primary sources dealing with Shakespeare's life and career, and the result is an impressively weighty and scholarly study. Honan is particularly strong on the early years in Stratford, and young William's relationship with his father, as well as the poet's attitude towards the women in his life: his intelligent mother, Mary, his shadowy wife, Anne, his sisters Joan and Margaret, and his two daughters, Susanna and Judith. Honan's touch is less sure when he follows Shakespeare to London, where the biography gets bogged down in interpreting virtually all of the plays in relation to biographical "facts", an approach which has been the subject of much criticism within Shakespeare studies in recent years. But if every age gets the biography of Shakespeare that it deserves, then Honan's version perhaps unwittingly offers us a Shakespeare which catches the spirit of Britain's current post-Thatcherite times.

Honan's Shakespeare is a cautious, astute man in both his professional and personal life. This Shakespeare shows routine deference to both kin and country, cautiously negotiating the political and commercial pitfalls of Elizabethan and Jacobean London, painstakingly learning his craft, and with a constant eye on his carefully marshalled financial assets. Honan's biography is detailed, precise, and very well researched, but it ultimately offers a curiously colourless and uninspired Shakespeare, lacking the passion of the Romantics or even the genius of the Victorians. Perhaps this is, after all, the Shakespeare biography that the end of the 20th century deserves. --Jerry Brotton

Pressestimmen

this is now the best available life of Shakespeare. Stanley Wells, The Observer 18/10/98

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Buchdeckel | Copyright | Inhaltsverzeichnis | Auszug | Stichwortverzeichnis
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Kundenrezensionen

3.7 von 5 Sternen

Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen

1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von Ein Kunde am 22. Juni 1999
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
What a sad, resourceless bunch of readers your lay reviwers are. The author makes plain at the start the remit of his book, to eschew the romantic speculation about the `bard's' life in favour of a meticulous examination of the facts. This does not make the book `booring,' far from it. If you want cheap thrills, stick to Star Wars. For the intelligent lay-reader with half a brain, this book take a little while to get into, but the effort is well worth it, repaid by insight into London at that time, the theatrical world (in London)and much, much more. I found it enriched my understanding of a much-discussed, much-mythologised figure. Ignore the carpers. Top banana.
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1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von Ein Kunde am 26. Januar 2000
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
After the standard non-bio (we know so little about him, etc) offered during my school years, this detailed and solid account of Shakespeare comes as an entertaining surprise. Obviously there's been a lot unearthed about Shakespeare's life just since the short time I last visited Stratford. Honan's book is especially interesting for the myths it dispels about the Bard. He seems to have been a surprisingly down to earth man, good natured, aware of his talent but by no means filled with an overweaning sense of greatness the way later artists would be. Superb overall.
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Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Perhaps scholars on the subject of William Shakespeare have some legitimate criticisms to make of certain details and comments in Honan's book. Frankly, I couldn't care less. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it, learned a great deal from it, and now plan to read or re-read other books on the same (general) subject. Given the popularity of two recent films, Elizabeth and Shakespeare in Love, I must assume that there are many other readers who would also appreciate having an especially well-informed, charming, and energetic companion during a journey back in time to Elizabethan England. Yes, this is a biography of Shakespeare...but more, much more.
Following a List of Illustrations (which are excellent), an Introduction, and A Note on Conventions Used in the Text, Honan divides his book into for parts:
I. A Stratford Youth
II. Actor and Poet of the London Stage
III. The Maturity of Genius
IV. The Last Phase
At this point in my brief commentary, I want to stress that Honan's writing style is semi-formal but reader-friendly. His prose shares many of the same strengths evident in the works of other authors such as Alistair Cooke, E.B. White, and Charles Kuralt.
The world in which Shakespeare lived and worked was one of the most interesting throughout human history. Honan includes a wealth of social, political, and cultural information about that age in combination with anecdotes, gossip, speculations and conjectures, correlation's between Shakespeare's works and the details in his life, etc. What were Shakespeare's probable circumstances during his childhood and youth in Stratford? What was it like to live in London, especially when that walled city was ravaged by plague? Who attended live performances? When? Where?
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The first bio of Shakespeare I've actually been able to finish! Honan's approach is reasonable, intelligent, and well-researched. It also happens to be quite interesting, providing not only the best and most tantalizing of the available evidence of Shakespeare's life, but also by painting a portrait of the milieu in which he lived and worked. Never before has Shakespeare's achievement seemed so towering, and yet so human. Much better by far than Bloom's bloated and self-serving paean. Although slightly marred by Honan's quirky style, and by the mysterious sudden disappearance from the narrative of Anne (Hathaway) Shakespeare before the poet's death, it nonetheless held me in thrall all weekend. I hate the phrase, but it's a definite "must-read"!
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An excellent and as thoroughly as possible knowable account (for now), of the Bards life. Scholarly, and sometimes dense, but accessible and an enjoyable pleasure for the well-read in literature, Shakespeare, the theatre, etc.; especially those finding delight in the details. It does, however, lack the passion of Blooms's "Shakespeare, The Invention of the Human". The latter book which draws on Shakespeare's plays exclusively and exhaustively soars with soul-deep passion to great heights of pure joy in the expression of Shakespeare's words, emotion and humanism. Bloom's Shakespeare, if you have the time and interest, is a 5-star book. Well worth it actually even if you only delve into some of the plays.
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