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Romeo and Juliet (Cambridge School Shakespeare) Paperback – 23 Jun 2005


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Product details

  • Paperback: 228 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press; 3 edition (23 Jun. 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0521618703
  • ISBN-13: 978-0521618700
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 1.5 x 22.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 13,340 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Amazon Review

This is undoubtedly the greatest love story ever written, spawning a host of imitators on stage and screen, including Leonard Bernstein's smash musical West Side Story, Franco Zeffirelli's Romeo and Juliet filmed in 1968, and Baz Luhrmann's postmodern film version Romeo + Juliet. The tragic feud between "Two households, both alike in dignity/In fair Verona", the Montagues and Capulets, which ultimately kills the two young "star-crossed lovers" and their "death-marked love" creates issues which have fascinated subsequent generations. The play deals with issues of intergenerational and familial conflict, as well as the power of language and the compelling relationship between sex and death, all of which makes it an incredibly modern play. It is also an early example of Shakespeare fusing poetry with dramatic action, as he moves from Romeo's lyrical account of Juliet--"she doth teach the torches to burn bright!" to the bustle and action of a 16th-century household (the play contains more scenes of ordinary working people than any of Shakespeare's other works). It also represents an experimental attempt to fuse comedy with tragedy. Up to the third act, the play proceeds along the lines of a classic romantic comedy. The turning point comes with the death of one of Shakespeare's finest early dramatic creations--Romeo's sexually ambivalent friend Mercutio, whose "plague o' both your houses" begins the play's descent into tragedy, "For never was a story of more woe/Than this of Juliet and her Romeo". --Jerry Brotton --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

'These tapes are invaluable not just because of the quality of the diction and presentation but because they are based on the complete text as established by Philip Edwards for the New Cambridge Shakespeare edition of the plays. They may be used in conjunction with the plays or simply listened to for the sheer joy of hearing Shakespeare's wonderful language without having to endure the absurdities of so many modern productions.' Contemporary Review

'Well worth acquiring for any good audio collection.' AVL-Multimedia Information

'The CD jacket boasts of a performance of 'the complete text: fully dramatised' - a Shakespearean purist's dream … a comprehensive and faithful treatment of the play'. Cahiers Elisabéthains --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By M. Dowden HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 2 Mar. 2010
Format: Paperback
I have always loved this tale of doomed love, there is just something so haunting and tragic about it that will make even a grown man cry. As with many of Shakespeare's works this is not an original idea but is based on an Italian ballad, but whereas that ballad has been forgotten what Shakespeare did with it will be with us for ever. I could spend a few paragraphs giving a brief synopsis of this play, but what wold be the point? People who have never read it or seen any performance of it know the basic storyline.

This story appeals to people from all walks of life with its tale of forbidden love between two teens. Juliet obviously lusts after Romeo in no way that a teen fiction love story these days does. That in our modern world the two obviously consumate their love adds a certain frisson as strictly speaking Juliet is under age, but that thankfully hasn't sent the censor to start editing it.

Really delving into what love and subsequently lust means this play should be a standard on the curriculum and could be used as a starting point for sex education. Shakespeare really showed here what being in love feels like as no one has ever done before or since and he speaks to our psyche and our emotions that makes this drama so memorable. Really this is a must read, and if ou want to see a film version then you should really opt for Romeo And Juliet [DVD] [1968].
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Spider Monkey HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on 3 Nov. 2007
Format: Paperback
In some respects I think it'd be rather presumptuous of me to attempt to review Shakespeare. Someone so well known and influential wouldn't benefit from my opinions on their work, plus there are more scholarly and concise reviews out there. But I can comment on these Arden versions. Of all the Shakespeare I've read I've always found the Arden copies to be well laid out and to have excellent commentary and notes on the text. They really add to your understanding of Shakespeares outstanding plays and introduce you to the depth in his work. They have superb paper quality and are bound well, withstanding repeated readings and intensive study. For your collection of Shakespeare you can't do much better than Arden publications, some are quite hard to get hold of but it's worth the effort.

Feel free to check out my blog which can be found on my profile page.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By B Jones on 26 April 2014
Format: Paperback
The copy sent by world of books was dirty, with folded pages and highlighter markings. After complaining, I was sent a replacement copy, but this was rebound in spiral binding and began at act 2 scene 3, with the first half of the text completely missing! After complaining a second time, I got no response at all. Poor service from World of Books.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By N. E. Wood on 4 Mar. 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I used to think I understood the original text, but with the Sparknotes modern text alongside the original I realised just how much I had been missing. I never realised Mercutio was quite so rude! Generally I would only want the modern translation as a guide to help with understanding, but this is the exception. While not quite Shakespeare at his best it's pithy and in keeping with the spirit of the original and could certainly be used on its own to give a good flavour of Shakespearean theatre without the misunderstandings. I would certainly buy other books in this series.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Mrs. K. A. Wheatley TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 14 Mar. 2008
Format: Paperback
This is a weighty tome, giving much more than just the standard text. The introduction alone is 125 pages long. It is well worth a read, split into several relevant sections including Shakespeare's use of the Petrarchan love imagery and his adaptation of the Sonnet form into the play. It also deals with the play in production, which is also very helpful.

The play itself has a full commentary with a glossary and notes on editing and textual differences with other versions of the play. At the end what is known as the 'bad' quarto of the play has also been reprinted. This is believed to be a version of the play which was written down by some players themselves from memory. As such it has differences and errors to the version which is usually printed, known as Quarto 2. It is useful to compare and contrast ideas and editorial decisions, and is handy for the committed student of Shakespeare.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By M S Bacon on 29 April 2004
Format: Paperback
The Arden Shakespeare is a scholarly edition intended for students andthose doing research on Shakespeare. The extensive notes are very usefulfor those who study Shakespeare at degree level and above. Since moststudents already know the meanings of archaic words there is little needto explain them in the notes - which are not there to entertain but toinform. Don't buy it if you aren't studying Shakespeare, there are cheaperversions available for the casual reader.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mrs LJ Rice on 8 Dec. 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Larger font and clear presentation for this classic play, I would recommended this book to others and being light enough easy to carry to school.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Michele Foreman on 29 Dec. 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is excellent, it has really helped me to understand the story better and to hopefully pass my exam.
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