Shakespeare and the Urgency of Now Criticism and Theory in the 21st Century

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2013-07-19
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
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Today, in light of the markedly precarious state of the world's politics, ecology and economy, where does Shakespeare figure in our changing world? By the same token, how do economic, environmental and institutional pressures interpenetrate Shakespeare as a cultural enterprise - in performance, film, popular culture, global appropriation - and no less in academic criticism? Ever since Martin Luther King Jr. first evoked the 'fierce urgency of now' in the American civil rights movement in the early 1960s, his trope has become ubiquitous. It continues to be a powerful slogan for civil rights. It's frequently intoned by global anti-poverty and social equality activists, and resounds strongly when evoked in the global environmental movement. Connecting with such concerns, these essays address the intersections between Shakespeare, history and the present using a variety of new and established methodological approaches, from phenomenology and ecocriticism to the new economics and aesthetics.

Author Biography

Cary DiPietro lectures in English and Drama at the University of Toronto, Canada. His main interests have circled around the theatrical and cultural afterlife of Shakespeare's drama, specifically the cultures of modernism and postmodernism, criticism, theory, theatre and film. He is the author of Shakespeare and Modernism (2006) as well as related articles in journals such as New Theatre Quarterly, Shakespeare Survey and Shakespeare.

Hugh Grady is Professor of English at Arcadia University, USA. He has published extensively in the field of Shakespeare studies and is the author of Shakespeare, Machiavelli, and Montaigne: Power and Subjectivity from Richard II to Hamlet (2002), Shakespeare's Universal Wolf: Studies in Early Modern Reification (1996) and The Modernist Shakespeare: Critical Texts in a Material World (1994), editor of Shakespeare and Modernity: Early Modern to Millennium (2000) and Presentist Shakespeares (2006).

Table of Contents

Forward: A Bigger Splash; Terence Hawkes
1. Presentism, Anachronism and Titus Andronicus; Cary DiPietro and Hugh Grady
2. The Presentist Threat to Editions of Shakespeare; Gabriel Egan
3 Shakespeare Dwelling: Pericles and the Affordances of Action; Julia Reinhard Lupton
4. Performing Place in The Tempest; Cary DiPietro
5. Green Economics and the English Renaissance: from Capital to the Commons; Charles Whitney
6. 'Consuming means, soon preys upon itself': Political Expedience and Environmental Degradation in Richard II; Lynne Bruckner
7. 'What light through yonder window speaks?': Populism, Pedagogy, and Performance in The Nature Theater of Oklahoma Romeo and Juliet; W. B. Worthen
8. Reification, Mourning, and the Aesthetic in Antony and Cleopatra and The Winter's Tale; Hugh Grady
9. The Hour is Unknown: Julius Caesar, et cetera; Mark Robson

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