Holding a Mirror up to Nature: Shame, guilt, and violence in Shakespeare
Cambridge University Press, $43.95 pb, 174 pp
Familiarity may have inured us to Shakespeare’s violence. Poison, suffocation, suicide, rape, and assassination are among the central events of his major plays. But the upper-middle-class respectability of too many Shakespeare performances and the insipid, managerial culture of academic ‘Shakespeare studies’ threaten to reduce the greatest of all dramatists to something antiseptic and safe.