Marjorie Garber

William R. Kenan, Jr., Professor of English and of Visual and Environmental Studies
Harvard University

Shakespeare After All

Shakespeare After All
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In Shakespeare After All Marjorie Garber – professor of English and director of the Humanities Center at Harvard University – gives us a magisterial work of criticism, authoritative and engaging, based on her hugely popular lectures courses at Yale and Harvard over the past thirty years. Richly informed by Shakespeare scholarship of the latter half of the twentieth century, this book offers passionate and revealing readings of all thirty-eight of Shakespeare’s plays. In chronological sequence, from The Two Gentlemen of Verona to The Two Noble Kinsmen. With erudition lightly carried, Garber illumines the overarching patterns and lush details of the plays, closely attentive to what matters most in Shakespeare: language, theme, plot, and character.

Here are fresh meditations on plays we have come to know and love, such as Hamlet, King Lear, Macbeth, Othello, The Taming of the Shrew, Romeo and Juliet, The Merchant of Venice, and The Tempest, and fruitful engagements with others not often read or produced – Henry IV, Parts 1, 2 and 3; The Merry Wives of Windsor; King John; Timon of Athens; Pericles; and Cymbeline. Garber affords us a rare chance to trace Shakespeare’s stylistic development as a writer of verse and prose, an artful designer of dramatic scenarios and revelations, a masterly sketcher of woman and man, and a keen observer of society high and low.

Complete with a comprehensive introduction to Shakespeare’s life and times and extensive bibliography, Shakespeare After All is a landmark work that enlarges our understanding of the most celebrated writer of all time.

Praise for

Shakespeare After All

The best one-volume critical guide to the plays.

– The Miami Herald

An enraptured ceremony of adoration ... Ambitious and thorough ... This is a useful book [and] a source of elucidation.

– Newsday

[Garber’s] introduction is an exemplary account of what is known about Shakespeare and how his work has been read and regarded through the centuries, while the individual essays display scrupulous subtle close reading.

– The New Yorker

Exhilarating ... The indispensable introduction to the indispensable writer ... Garber lights up the plays with insights.

– Newsday

A lifetime of learning has gone into the production of this massive volume ... Garber is sensitive to significant details in the language ... and she gives cogent accounts of historical contexts.

– The Boston Globe

Garber’s is the most exhilarating seminar room you’ll ever enter.

– Newsweek

A delight ... Polished, thoughtful, eminently useful ... Not only a wonderful guide to the plays, but as importantly, it’s a guide to the reading of the plays ... Garber writes elegantly and insightfully ... The reader seeking an informed guide to each play simply cannot do better.

– The Providence Journal

Impossibly full ... engagingly written ... It fills you with gratitude on virtually every page. Here, in a book, is a Shakespearean course for our time.

– The Buffalo News

An absolute joy ... Extremely lively and witty ... Remarkable ... Authoritative.

– Tucson Citizen

Garber keeps her eye on the goal, to illuminate the experience of the reading and seeing the plays, and achieves it with quiet efficiency.

– San Jose Mercury News

Stimulating and informative.

– The Charlotte Observer

The indispensable introduction to the indispensable writer ... one of 10 best books of 2004.

– Newsweek

Marjorie Garber’s Shakespeare courses at Yale and Harvard have played to packed housed for years. Now in a Bravura performance, she offer all readers of Shakespeare the benefits of her wit and learning. In a wondrously lively and authoritative study that takes up the plays one by one.

– Jonathon Culler, professor of English and Comparative Literature, Cornell University

I sat in on a lecture in Professor Garber’s Harvard course in the early nineties. It was the single best talk on Shakespeare I’d ever heard.

– John Lithgow

Marge Garber’s knowledge of Shakespeare is breathtaking. Her intellectual vigor and originality are in evidence on every page of Shakespeare After All.

– Tina Packer, Shakespeare & Company