to School Shakespeare
books and other items that allow you to take Shakespeare
back to school - or on vacation - with you
Prospero 8/19/2000 | It's
time to go back to schoolor on a late summer vacation to Ashland,
Stratford, or elsewhereand Prospero has selected the books
and other items you need to get to know the bard at study or at
Thin paperbacks you can put in your back pocket, sporting an attractive
typeface, uncluttered text, and ink that doesn't rub off on your
hand: that what makes The Pelican Shakespeare Prospero's
favorite edition for general audiences. Perfect for taking Shakespeare
to the beach, the park, the mall, your favorite espresso stand,
class, around town, your bedroomor even to the play itself.
The complete hardback edition is very attractive too: a well-made
book that you'd be proud to see a visitor pull off the shelf, with
nothing that screams "textbook" about it. To buy them
from amazon.com, follow the links below.
For serious scholars, nothing still beats The Arden Shakespeare,
nor is likely to for the foreseeable future. Those in the know come
here for a full account of textual variants, and copious line-by-line
glosses on Shakespeare's probable meaning. They're like detailed
topographical maps of every play. Only problem is, they're sometimes
hard to come by, even on amazon.com. And stay away from the Complete
Worksthey left out the critical apparatus!
Pelican and Arden seem to be coming out with a new editions for
the millennium. With the Ardens, this isn't a big deal: the critical
apparatus should change but little. As for the Pelicans, however,
Prospero will be sorry to see some of the old ones gothe Northrop
Frye Tempest in particular. He just hopes they haven't made
them bulkier, or started using inferior ink. Let
him know if they have, and he'll knock a few heads about to
get the Pelicans of his youth restored.
One definition of infinity: the number of critical works written
about Shakespeare. If only their value equaled their mass.
Here are three of the best, in Prospero's humble (if impeccably
well schooled) opinion:
C. L. Barber, Shakespeare's
Makes you realize why you love A
Midsummer Night's Dream, As You Like It, Twelfth
Nightand Shakespeare in Love. Even academics
like Joeor at least they used too, before they abandoned
the common understanding and began writing for each other alone.
Stephen Booth, Shakespeare's
Most readers have an inkling there must
be something dirty going on beneath the covers of the Sonnets,
if only they could catch a glimpse. Booth's "Analytic Commentary"
gives you the whole video collection, with close-ups galore. You'll
never think of Willor "all", "nothing",
or "confound"in the same way again after a visit
to this Booth. Adults only, please!
Stephen Greenblatt, Shakespearean
Interesting coincidences of Shakespeare
and history, often genuinely illuminating, if a bit overwrought.
Might be pretty hard going for those who haven't graduated college
And of course:
Harold Bloom, Shakespeare:
The Invention of the Human
What can I say? Bloom wrote himself
a bestseller. A hefty, comprehensive tome: thank God Bloom has
wit, wisdom, and weirdness enough to liven it up. It's fitting
that the critic who made all later writers anxious about the bard's
influence finally got around to tackling the subject himself.
But who can forgive turning Shakespeare into Two Face in the book's
promotional campaign, with the less favored half Bloom's own.
Holy Harold! Leave such stunts to Batman comics, please.
The Writing Company has the greatest selection of Shakespeare-related
posters Prospero's ever seen. Just the thing to hang on your bedroomor
your dormroomwall. Almost makes Prospero wish he could go
back to school, if only to get the chance to show one of these babies
off. For a complete selection, visit The
Writing Company Shop in shakespeare.com's market.
A perfect first introduction to Shakespeare - and fun for everyone
on your coffeetable.
the World's a Stage: A Pop-Up Biography of William Shakespeare
by Michael Bender
Rewrite Shakespeare on the fridge for your roommates' benefitor
to impress visiting professors. Courtesy museumcompany.com.
WizGames.com offers a couple
of free game engines and an expanding collection of quiz titles
to play on themincluding Hamlet and Romeo and Juliet games.
Not just educationalthey're fun too! Download them and the
Take a Shot at a Million engine now at www.wizgames.com.
Want a bust of Shakespeare for your dorm-room or office mantlepiece?
ShakeSpirit offers two
modelsone bronze, one sandstoneto occupy the niche.
Check them out at www.shakespirit.com.
|Shakespeare in Love
Everyone's favorite Shakespeare movie. Well, okay, maybe some
scholars took exception; but Prospero and everybody else in the
world loved it. What's not to like? Gwyneth looks radiant, Joseph
Fiennes is even more beautiful than she, the course of true love
runs about as smooth as you could desirewhat would life be
without a few complications?and there's even a darling toothbrushing
scene with what seems to be an actual historical implement. Of course,
there's absolutely no historical basis for nearly everything that
goes onbut by the end, we really and truly wish there were.
So if you want to take a copy along to school, to savor with your
roommates or share on an iMac with your buddies, you'll need one
of the following.
From amazon.com (for US and similar players):
in Love: Collector's Series (DVD)
in Love (VHS)
In Love: Music By Stephen Warbeck (CD)
From BlackStar.co.uk (For UK and similar players):
In Love (Region 2 DVD)
In Love (PAL VHS)
That's all, folks! Have a great school yearand keep the other
denizens of shakespeare.com posted on all your bard-related activities.
And if there's something Prospero's missed that you'd like to see
available here, please drop
him a line.
|Copyright © 2000 Dana Spradley, Publisher,
shakespeare.com. All rights reserved. Last updated 9/17/2000.