2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well Edited and Comprehensive
This Cambridge University Press edition is well edited by Ann Thompson. It has a lengthy introduction, running to fifty pages, which offer some interesting insights into major themes of the play. It also deals with the fact that the play is now considered a problem play as much as a comedy, and how critics and editors have dealt with it. She ranges across different...
Published on 31 Jan. 2008 by Mrs. K. A. Wheatley
1.0 out of 5 stars not recommended
The book was in used condition with many messy highlighted sections which is a disappointment :(
Published 7 months ago by Agmel
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well Edited and Comprehensive,
This review is from: The Taming of the Shrew (The New Cambridge Shakespeare) (Paperback)
This Cambridge University Press edition is well edited by Ann Thompson. It has a lengthy introduction, running to fifty pages, which offer some interesting insights into major themes of the play. It also deals with the fact that the play is now considered a problem play as much as a comedy, and how critics and editors have dealt with it. She ranges across different schools of criticism to give a well balanced view of the play as a whole.
It deals in great detail with the dating of the play and the problems caused by the different editions, including a play called 'a shrew' which has remarkable similarities with 'the shrew'. There are several appendix which also deal with some of this, as well as the issue of music and its use in the play.
The main problem with the body of the introduction is that it was written in the late 1970's, which means that much has changed in the last thirty eight years. Nevertheless, the recent reprint with a shorter addendum to the original introduction does try to bring in some of the newer elements of the staging, filming and critical appreciation of the play.
The play text itself is well set out, although as a novice, I did find the footnotes rather confusing, as she mixes straightforward interpretation of more complex words and phrases with a much deeper discussion of the choices she has made regarding the editions used and the editing of certain lines and words. It is however, a good literary play text with all sources amply explained and plenty of further reference material alluded too if needed.
18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An introduction worth persevering with,
This review is from: The Taming of the Shrew (New Penguin Shakespeare) (Mass Market Paperback)
"The Taming of the Shrew" is one of Shakespeare's more controversial plays. The concluding speech by Katherina has her espouse the role of subservient little woman, bowing to the will of husband, lord and master. Indeed, the theme is conquest and control of the shrew, of Katherina (or Katherine) - much of the comedy and drama derives from efforts to tame the woman's spirit.
A caricature of women in general? Perhaps. Or an elaborate irony? It seems Katherina's spirit is tamed, that she is reduced to submission. Controversial because of its anti-feminist message? Or controversial because in its day there was a queen on the throne and Elizabeth was hardly a woman whose spirit could be tamed, hardly a woman unable to make her own eloquent statements about the competence and capacity of women. To denounce women, to humiliate women, would be to denounce and humiliate one particular woman, and Shakespeare could hardly afford to make such an enemy; the price might be his head.
"The Taming of the Shrew" is an eloquent play which relies heavily on wordplay and witty banter, its dialogue coming in machinegun bursts. It is a play which cannot simply be read - it has to be watched in production (ideally after you've read through it a couple of times). The Royal Shakespeare Company recently put on a hugely popular production (with Alexandra Gilbreath playing Katherine), but they do not seem to have released it on DVD. See a live production if you can, or invest in the BBC's earlier recording of Jonathan Miller's RSC production.
However, review of the play is one thing, the crucial factor for the reader is the quality of this book. The New Penguin Shakespeare edition provides a robust little paperback which easily fits into a pocket or bag: print and paper quality are adequate, but the page size leaves little room to scribble notes or annotations (perish the thought). The play occupies 106 pages of text. You get a further 82 pages of commentary, explaining meaning and context, line by line. It's very useful and informative, either for the casual reader or, certainly, for the student.
There is a further ten page section of textual analysis, a couple of pages on further reading and a 38 page introduction. This is actually quite a lucid, intelligent, and helpful analysis - once you get past the first page. The first page of the introduction will put many readers off. It is heavy, verbose, obtuse, prosaically purple - you get the picture? The first couple of paragraphs need a textual analysis of their own! Thereafter, the analysis becomes much more fluid and accessible, and makes numerous valid points which the student will need to note and note again.
An excellent little production, perhaps not as robust as some editions - particularly as student copies will be bent and buckled to destruction. If you are studying the text, try to collaborate with your friends and buy different editions of the play so you can swap the introductions and commentaries. Excellent, economical little volume.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing,
I needed this for some coursework at school, and it helped with everything! There were notes and vocabulary when you need them, everything was described how it should be from the seller, thank you!
arrived promptly in very good condition :D
5.0 out of 5 stars Lesser Celebrated, But Not The Lesser,
Personally speaking, it is a great shame committed by Wordsworth Classics to have the fairly elementary responsibility of re-printing an all time classic (deserving of the subtitle) and fumble around with a misspelling on the back cover! i.e. "The Tamimg of the Shrew" (are they having a laugh? OR am I missing something fundamental?)
Besides that, this tale is an account of an energetic power struggle between two, not so innocent, partners. Bemusement, en garde posturing, feisty pleasures in misplaced passion, insecurity masquerading as a point of power,and the feminine suppressed but not faultless…all in all an account (with cadence) of many a contemporary relationship (with the exception of social etiquette and attention to the preservation of fidelity).
5.0 out of 5 stars genuinely funny. But,
This review is from: The Taming of the Shrew (The Contemporary Shakespeare Series) (Kindle Edition)
Having read only Shakespearean tragedies during my school years, I decided to read this to see how it compared to it's Hollywood musical counterpart! Perhaps if my English teacher had started with this, then more of my classmates would have embraced the idea of studying the Bard... genuinely funny. But, come on - it's Shakespeare, what can I say?
4.0 out of 5 stars Bill shakespeare at it again,
This review is from: The Taming of the Shrew (Kindle Edition)
Enjoyed the reading, but its the getting into the language makes it hard to follow. But knowing the storyline beforehand helped
5.0 out of 5 stars This is just the very best play. I loved eading all the major speeches.,
This review is from: The Taming of the Shrew (Dover Thrift Editions) (Kindle Edition)
This is just the very best play. I loved eading all the major speeches. Shakespeare at his very best, he understands human nature like no one else.
5.0 out of 5 stars Taming of the Shrew,
Product fine - delivery great -product as described. I really cannot be bothered to write reviews for every book I buy just to keep Amazon happy. Buyers should know what they are getting with Shakespear,
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Good,
This book was exactly as promised; perfect condition and an interesting read. Very much enjoyed as I am studying the subject at school and was very useful to me.
5.0 out of 5 stars Great purchase,
I was completely happy and satisfied with the product. The product is everything I imagined and I was pleased with the price and packaging.
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The Taming of the Shrew (New Penguin Shakespeare) by G. R. Hibbard (Mass Market Paperback - 31 Mar. 1968)
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