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Book Cover for: A Midsummer Night's Dream, William Shakespeare

A Midsummer Night's Dream

William Shakespeare

Reader Score


80% of readers

recommend this book

"This edition of A Midsummer Night's Dream takes the comedy seriously. Like my previous Hackett editions, it gives full weight to Shakespeare's dramatic setting, which other editors (and scholars) almost always ignore or at least fail adequately to consider. Ancient Athens is the core, not the mere background, of Midsummer Night's Dream. As we shall see, Shakespeare focuses, in particular, on the love of the beautiful and the triumph of learning and art, along with the rise of democracy, which, as Pericles' famously claims, are the hallmarks of Athens. 'We are lovers of the beautiful with thrift, and lovers of wisdom without softness' (Thucydides, The Peloponnesian War, 2.40.1). [...]
Failure to consider classical Athens as central to Midsummer Night's Dream will cause a reader to miss not only the play's remarkable substance, but much of its sparkling comedy as well. Far from impeding the play's humor, focusing on Athens helps to bring out multi-layers of comedy that Shakespeare put there."

Book Details

  • Publisher: St. Augustine's Press
  • Publish Date: May 31st, 2024
  • Pages: 175
  • Language: English
  • Dimensions: 0.00in - 0.00in - 0.00in - 0.00lb
  • EAN: 9781587315329
  • Recommended age: 13-17
  • Categories: Literary

About the Author

Jan H. Blits is Emeritus Professor in University Honors Faculty at the University of Delaware. He received his B.A. from St. John's College, Annapolis, Maryland, and his Ph.D. from the New School for Social Research in New York City. He has served as Secretary of the Navy Distinguished Fellow at the U.S. Naval Academy, has won the University of Delaware's Excellence in Teaching Award, and was the 2011 winner of the Jeane J. Kirkpatrick Academic Freedom Award.

Professor Blits is the author of seven books, including, most recently, New Heaven, New Earth: Shakespeare's 'Antony and Cleopatra' (Lexington Books, 2009) and Telling, Turning Moments in the Classical Political World (Lexington Books, 2011). His articles have appeared in The Review of Politics, The Journal of Politics, Political Theory, Interpretation, Apeiron, The Southern Journal of Philosophy, The Public Interest, Educational Theory, and other journals.

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