Will in the World: How Shakespeare Became Shakespeare (Anniversary Edition)

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W. W. Norton & Company, May 3, 2010 - Biography & Autobiography - 384 pages
30 Reviews

The Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award finalist, reissued with a new afterword for the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death.

A young man from a small provincial town moves to London in the late 1580s and, in a remarkably short time, becomes the greatest playwright not of his age alone but of all time. How is an achievement of this magnitude to be explained? Stephen Greenblatt brings us down to earth to see, hear, and feel how an acutely sensitive and talented boy, surrounded by the rich tapestry of Elizabethan life, could have become the world’s greatest playwright.

 

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User Review  - setnahkt - LibraryThing

On June 29, 1613, the King’s Players put on Henry VIII at the Globe Theater in Southwark. Miniature cannons were fired during a scene representing Henry VIII attending a masque at Cardinal Wolsey’s ... Read full review

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User Review  - kukulaj - LibraryThing

I am no Shakespeare scholar, not by any stretch, so my response is that of a novice. I have read books about the general period though, e.g. about Giordano Bruno. So I have some prior vague ideas ... Read full review

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Contents

Preface
11
Acknowledgments
15
A Note to the Reader
17
Primal Scenes
23
The Dream of Restoration
54
The Great Fear
87
Wooing Wedding and Repenting
118
Crossing the Bridge
149
Shakescene
199
MasterMistress
226
Laughter at the Scaffold
256
Speaking with the Dead
288
Bewitching the King
323
The Triumph of the Everyday
356
Bibliographical Notes
391
Index 409
408

Life in the Suburbs
175

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About the author (2010)

Stephen Greenblatt (Ph.D. Yale) is Cogan University Professor of the Humanities at Harvard University. Also General Editor of The Norton Anthology of English Literature, he is the author of eleven books, including Tyrant, The Rise and Fall of Adam and Eve: The Story that Created Us, The Swerve: How the World Became Modern (winner of the 2011 National Book Award and the 2012 Pulitzer Prize); Shakespeare's Freedom; Will in the World: How Shakespeare Became Shakespeare; Hamlet in Purgatory; Marvelous Possessions: The Wonder of the New World; Learning to Curse: Essays in Early Modern Culture; and Renaissance Self-Fashioning: From More to Shakespeare. He has edited seven collections of criticism, including Cultural Mobility: A Manifesto, and is a founding coeditor of the journal Representations. His honors include the MLA’s James Russell Lowell Prize, for both Shakespearean Negotiations: The Circulation of Social Energy in Renaissance England and The Swerve, the Sapegno Prize, the Distinguished Humanist Award from the Mellon Foundation, the Wilbur Cross Medal from the Yale University Graduate School, the William Shakespeare Award for Classical Theatre, the Erasmus Institute Prize, two Guggenheim Fellowships, and the Distinguished Teaching Award from the University of California, Berkeley. He was president of the Modern Language Association of America and is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, and the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

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