Shakespeare's Universality: Here's Fine Revolution

Research output: Book/ReportBook


This book sets out to reclaim the concept of Shakespeare’s timeless universality from the reactionary misconstructions placed on it by conservative and radical critics alike. The book is divided into four chapters. The first chapter outlines the argument, which is driven by the belief that recognising and activating the revolutionary potential of Shakespeare’s drama is more urgent today than ever. The rest of the book develops the argument in detail through close readings of a wide range of plays and poems. Chapter Two provides a fresh explanation of how Shakespeare’s drama is able to transcend the time from which it sprang, and shows why this ability is inseparable from the universal human standpoint from which it is written. Chapter Three reveals the true source of Shakespeare’s universality, and hence his enduring global appeal, as his capacity to dramatize life in his time from a prophetic, egalitarian perspective that is still ahead of our time. The final chapter recapitulates the key points of the book’s argument through a new reading of Shakespeare’s strangest play, Timon of Athens, in which the quintessential qualities of his drama are enshrined.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherThe Arden Shakespeare
Number of pages160
ISBN (Electronic)9781472503251 , 9781472503268
ISBN (Print)9781408183496
Publication statusPublished - 23 Apr 2015

Publication series

NameShakespeare Now!
PublisherBloomsbury Arden Shakespeare


  • Shakespeare’s universality; Shakespeare’s timelessness; Shakespeare’s plays; Shakespeare’s poems; Shakespeare criticism; Shakespeare and revolution; conservative Shakespeare; radical Shakespeare; Timon of Athens

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