The Quest for Shakespeare

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Ignatius Press, Jan 1, 2008 - Biography & Autobiography - 275 pages
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Highly regarded and best-selling literary writer and teacher, Joseph Pearce presents a stimulating and vivid biography of the world's most revered writer that is sure to be controversial. Unabashedly provocative, with scholarship, insight and keen observation, Pearce strives to separate historical fact from fiction about the beloved Bard.

Shakespeare is not only one of the greatest figures in human history, he is also one of the most controversial and one of the most elusive. He is famous and yet almost unknown. Who was he? What were his beliefs? Can we really understand his plays and his poetry if we don't know the man who wrote them?

These are some of the questions that are asked and answered in this gripping and engaging study of the world's greatest ever poet. The Quest for Shakespeare claims that books about the Bard have got him totally wrong. They misread the man and misread the work. The true Shakespeare has eluded the grasp of the critics. Dealing with the facts of Shakespeare's life and times, Pearce's quest leads to the inescapable conclusion that Shakespeare was a believing Catholic living in very anti-Catholic times.

Many of his friends and family were persecuted, and even executed, for their Catholic faith. And yet he seems to have avoided any notable persecution himself. How did he do this? How did he respond to the persecution of his friends and family? What did he say about the dreadful and intolerant times in which he found himself? The Quest for Shakespeare answers these questions in ways that will enlighten and astonish those who love Shakespeare's work, and that will shock and outrage many of his critics. This book is full of surprises for beginner and expert alike.

 

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LITERATURE for the NON-SUBJECTIVE

User Review  - Lethifold - Borders

I always hated Literature, particularly because of HOW is was taught in school: What do I care what you think this means, I want to know what it ACTUALLY means. Thank You, finally, for an objective criticism! I look forward to the comprehensive analyses of Shakespeare's works to come. Read full review

Contents

Dedication S Preface
9
Acknowledgments II
11
Shakespeare An Introductory Note
13
Will the Real Shakespeare Please Stand Up?
15
His Fathers Will
30
The Faith of His Fathers
39
Living with Outlaws
55
A Rose by Any Other Name
64
Playing Safe with the Queen
118
Red Herrings and Codpieces
129
Friends and Family
135
The Kings Good Servant
141
Last Years
151
He Died a Papist
164
Prefatory Note to the Appendices
173
Appendix A The Challenge of Shakespeare
174

Loves Labors
79
Lost Years
88
Murdered Spy
99
Martyred Priest
107
Finding the Comedy in the Tragedy
181
Bibliography
201
Index
207
Copyright

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About the author (2008)

Joseph Pearce is the author of numerous literary works including Literary Converts, The Quest for Shakespeare and Shakespeare on Love, and the editor of the Ignatius Critical Editions series. His other books include literary biographies of Oscar Wilde, J.R.R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, G. K. Chesterton and Alexander Solzhenitsyn.


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