Fiction Books:

Shakespeare's Promises

Format

Paperback

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Shakespeare's Promises by William J. Kerrigan
$57.99
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Description

Oaths, vows, contracts and promises are among the most momentous actions human beings can perform, in art as well as life. Although virtually ignored by literary theorists, these obligations motivate plots, test characters, provide rhetorical occasions, structure ironies and open thematic horizons. According to William Kerrigan, they had particular importance for Shakespeare, who wrote at a decisive moment in the history of promising, toward the end of its High Christian phase and near the beginning of its metaphysically lessened, though still central, role in the "contractual" state. Motivating his plots and supplying his characters with lofty rhetorical occasions, Shakespeare gave promising great dramatic life. More than that, promises made and kept "in good faith" reside at the heart of his idealism. Yet he also explores the ways in which promising and morality, for a variety of reasons, part company. After a discussion of promises in philosophy, law, psychology, politics, language and ordinary life, William Kerrigan presents detailed studies of "Richard III", "The Merchant of Venice", and "Othello" and concludes with a brief visit to the swearing scene in "Hamlet". "Shakespeare's Promises" should be a valuable resource, providing a fresh perspective to benefit all readers of Shakespeare.

Author Biography

William Kerrigan is a professor of English at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. His books include The Idea of the Renaissance, written with Gordon Braden, and Hamlet's Perfection, both available from Johns Hopkins.
Release date NZ
July 1st, 2003
Country of Publication
United States
Illustrations
No
Imprint
Johns Hopkins University Press
Pages
264
Dimensions
140x216x14
ISBN-13
9780801877438
Product ID
1822053

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