Tuesday, May 26, 2015

New and Novel: Shakespeare

The phrase "there is nothing new under the sun" comes from the Bible, but if it didn't, it might have come from the brain of William Shakespeare (or whomever you believe wrote Shakespeare's works) - he coined many words we use today and the plays are a minefield of turns of phrase that you'll recognize from other sources, because everybody quotes Shakespeare!

At any rate, there are some new things under the sun, because there are new books about Shakespeare and his world to be found in the library catalog, as well as some recent DVDs about his plays and/or performances of his works.  In April 2016, there will be a tribute to the poet and playwright on the event of his 400th death anniversary - interesting, in light of the fact that many prestigious U.S. universities no longer require English majors to study the Bard's works.

What do you think of Shakespeare? Do you have a favorite play, or sonnet? Does Shakespeare still deserve all the veneration he was once given?


The Shakespeare Book edited by Stanley Wells

Whether you are new to the poetry and prose of Shakespeare, and in need of a guide through the complex plots and unfamiliar language, or looking for a fresh perspective on his much-loved plays and sonnets, this book will shed light on the work of one of world literature's greatest figures.  The Science of Shakespeare: A New Look at the Playwright's Universe by Dan Falk   William Shakespeare lived at a remarkable time--a period we now recognize as the first phase of the Scientific Revolution. New ideas were transforming Western thought, the medieval was giving way to the modern, and the work of a few key figures hinted at the brave new world to come: The methodical and rational Galileo, the skeptical Montaigne, and--as Falk convincingly argues--Shakespeare, who observed human nature just as intently as the astronomers who studied the night sky.  The Time Traveler's Guide to Elizabethan England by Ian Mortimer  ... this popular history explores daily life in Queen Elizabeth's England, taking us inside the homes and minds of ordinary citizens as well as luminaries of the period, including Shakespeare, Christopher Marlowe, Sir Walter Raleigh, and Sir Francis Drake. Organized as a travel guide for the time-hopping tourist, Mortimer relates in delightful (and occasionally disturbing) detail everything from the sounds and smells of sixteenth-century England to the complex and contradictory Elizabethan attitudes toward violence, class, sex, and religion. Shakespeare's Restless World: A Portrait of an Era in Twenty Objects by Neil MacGregor  In this work of historical reconstruction Neil MacGregor and his team at the British Museum, working together in a landmark collaboration with the Royal Shakespeare Company and the BBC, bring us twenty objects that capture the essence of Shakespeare's universe and the Tudor era of Elizabeth I. How to Teach Your Children Shakespeare by Ken Ludwig Outlines an engaging way to instill an understanding and appreciation of Shakespeare's classic works in children, outlining a family-friendly method that incorporates the history of Shakespearean theater and society.  Ideas of Order: A Close Reading of Shakespeare's Sonnets by Neil L. Rudenstine  An approachable and indispensable guide to Shakespeare's sonnets Shakespeare's sonnets are the greatest single work of lyric poetry in English, as passionate, daring, intimate, and moving as any love poems we may encounter.Along with his expert critical narrative, Ideas of Order includes all of Shakespeare's sonnets. This enlightening book is an invaluable companion for Shakespeare neophytes and experienced readers alike.   Shakespeare Insult Generator: Mix and Match More Than 150,000 Insults in the Bard's Own Words by Barry Kraft      Watch   Shakespeare Uncovered, Season 1 and Season 2  Romeo & Juliet   Cymbeline  The Hollow Crown   Much Ado About Nothing  Coriolanus   *all descriptions are taken from the library catalog   

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