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The Oxford handbook of Shakespeare and performance /

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Shakespearean performance criticism has undergone a sea change in recent years, and strong tides of discovery are continuing to shift the contours of the discipline. The essays in this volume, written by scholars from around the world, reveal how these critical cross-currents are influencing the ways we now view Shakespeare in performance. The volume is organised in four Parts. Part I interrogates how Shakespeare continues to achieve contemporaneity for Western audiences by exploring modes of performance, acting styles, and aesthetic choices regarded as experimental. Part II tackles the burgeoning field of reception: how and why audiences respond to performances as they do, or actors to the conditions in which they perform; how immersive productions turn spectators into actors; how memory and cognition shape and reshape the performances we think we saw. Part III addresses the ways in which revolutions in technology have altered our views of Shakespeare, both through the mediums of film and sound recording, and through digitalizing processes that have generated a profound reconsideration of what performance is and how it is accessed. The final Part grapples with intercultural Shakespeare, considering not only matters of cultural hegemony and appropriation in a ’global’ importation of non-Western productions to Europe and North America, but also how Shakespeare has been made ’local’ in performances staged or filmed in African, Asian, and Latin American countries. Together, these ground-breaking essays attest to the richness and diversity of Shakespearean performance criticism as it is practiced today, and they point the way to critical continents not yet explored.

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