All's Well, That Ends Well: New Critical Essays (Shakespeare by Gary Waller

By Gary Waller

Described as one among Shakespeare’s such a lot interesting performs, All’s good That Ends Well has just recently all started to obtain the severe awareness it merits. famous as an important aspect of improvement in Shakespeare’s occupation, this choice of new essays displays the transforming into curiosity within the play and offers a huge variety of techniques to it, together with historic, feminist, performative and psychoanalytical criticisms.

In addition to 14 essays written through prime students, the editor’s creation offers a considerable assessment of the play’s serious heritage, with a powerful specialize in functionality research and the effect that this has had on its reception and acceptance. Demonstrating quite a few methods to the play and furthering contemporary debates, this booklet makes a precious contribution to Shakespeare criticism.

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There are a few appreciative remarks from the time, but they are primarily about Parolles, Rowe (1709) commenting that the character was “as good as anything . . ” Charlotte Lennox, however, objected to the “cruel, artful and insolent” Helena and the despicable Bertram who, in one of Dr Johnson’s famous dismissals, was evaluated thus: I cannot reconcile my heart to Bertram; a man noble without truth; who marries Helena as a coward, and leaves her as a profligate: when she is dead by his unkindness, sneaks home to a second marriage, is accused by a woman whom he has wronged, defends himself by falsehood, and is dismissed to happiness.

How 28 111 011 111 111 0111 0111 All’s Well, That Ends Well can patriarchal society tolerate that a woman should rule over men? How can a woman become the subject of her own desire? 149). 5), and opens the possibilities of alternative roles for women outside the control of patriarchy. ” By focusing rather on sexuality and desire, feminist criticism has enabled the scandal of All’s Well to emerge. Romantic love may be the basis of Shakespeare’s early comedies, but around 1600, the urgency of sexuality, not just the idealism or humor of love, becomes a major theme in his plays.

32 SHAKESPEARE’S CRITIQUE OF MASCULINITY As feminists have long claimed about psychoanalysis generally, such a reading focuses primarily on the male pattern—though as the next section 22 111 011 111 111 0111 0111 0111 111 All’s Well, That Ends Well will show, feminist critics have constructed equivalently powerful arguments centered on Helena and to some extent Diana. But the importance of Adelman’s argument—and those of other psychoanalytical readings of the play by Carol Neely and Coppélia Kahn—is not that it needs to be accepted in every detail but that it looks through the play at underlying psycho-social patterns and attempts to account for the allure of the play, and in particular the puzzling figure of Bertram.

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