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The Child in Shakespeare

Format: Academic Monograph
Media: Hardback
PublisherCode: 9780198828556
Publisher: OUP Oxford

The Child in Shakespeare is the first monograph to address the character and representation of the child in Shakespeare's drama, not as a specific life stage but as a role. Bringing together a vibrant range of early modern texts on parenting, teaching household manuals, nursing and child rearing, as well as Christian primers and conduct books, the volume explores the powerful place that children occupied in the early modern imagination. Addressing questions of love, memory, legacy, responsibility, and violence, the book examines how Shakespeare understood his dramatic children as both a life stage as well as a role through which he explored the complex dynamics between authority and subjection, played out in various keys throughout his works. It provides new readings of many of the plays as well as contributing to the ways in which we understand cultures and time periods through their representation of the child.

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