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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good edition for school (or home) study, 20 Jan. 2013
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This review is from: Merchant of Venice (2010 edition): Oxford School Shakespeare (Paperback)
There are, of course, many editions of each of Shakespeare's plays to choose from, each with different pros and cons. This edition of 'The Merchant of Venice' is in the 'Oxford School Shakespeare' series, and as an edition for student use, it's really rather good. The main text of the play is set out on the right of each page, with extensive helpful notes on the left, at the appropriate place, and with line numbers for reference. However, where this edition shines is in the accompanying material. It starts with a character list, then a synopsis of the play, and then an extensive commentary on the content of each scene. And at the end of the book, there's historical material on England at the end of the 16th century, when the play was written, along with a useful set of suggestions for ways to explore the play in the classroom.

'The Merchant of Venice' remains a controversial play for the way it treats Jews in general, and Shylock in particular. These issues are also tackled briefly in the book, in a way that seems appropriate for a school audience coming to the controversy for the first time.

My only minor niggle is that there is very limited information here on the history of the text itself, in terms of the difference between the first quarto, first folio and other editions, which might help students to see that some parts of the play remain objects of debate and dispute to the present day, rather than being set in aspic. But this is a minor quibble, and those who are interested can easily enough find this information out from many other editions, such as the Arden Shakespeare series.

All in all, an excellent study edition for school students, or even for those coming to this play later in life who want a straightforward introduction to the text and its controversies.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A fine edition of the play., 6 Nov. 2014
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Bluecashmere. (Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Merchant of Venice (2010 edition): Oxford School Shakespeare (Paperback)
For secondary school use it would be hard to find a better copy of a Shakespeare play than these Oxford School Editions. Their virtues have been spelt out in an earlier review, so no need to repeat them here.

"The Merchant of Venice " is far from my favourite play; I feel drawn to none of the characters, and find the sentimentalising of Shylock a major irritant. That the Venetians are vulgar and bigoted does not make Shylock an attractive figure, even if there are occasions when we can only commend his eloquent reasoning. Revenge is an ugly sentiment in a play that does little to celebrate generosity of spirit. Of course it remains powerful in a fine stage production and is well-suited to study at the 14-16 level as well as beyond. I shall cling to my battered Arden copy, but highly recommend this edition for those who prefer not to have pages with considerably more notes than text. It has a good, clear introduction and valuable notes as well as plenty of stimulus to discussion.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth paying extra, 29 Jun. 2014
This review is from: Merchant of Venice (2010 edition): Oxford School Shakespeare (Paperback)
My favourite Shakespeare play, it is the right combination of humour and sobriety. It deals with revenge, religious divides and justice, while employing wit to deliver these themes. It is a fairly simple plot, which is my only criticism.

The Oxford School Collection comes with a useful commentary on each scene, and with translations and explanations that run along the left-hand side of the page. I remember everyone fighting in English class for these copies, as they are so helpful, whether you have read Shakespeare before or not. It is brilliant for study and I am currently using them to prepare for going off to study English Literature at university.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, 25 Nov. 2013
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This review is from: Merchant of Venice (2010 edition): Oxford School Shakespeare (Paperback)
Fit for purpose for our son studying the Merchant of Venice at school for GCSE. Teacher also pleased with it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, 3 April 2015
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Chocolate Drop (wolves, england) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Merchant of Venice (2010 edition): Oxford School Shakespeare (Paperback)
Bought for my son to use at school, it's exactly what he needed and has additional helpful notes in it
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great!, 24 Feb. 2015
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This review is from: Merchant of Venice (2010 edition): Oxford School Shakespeare (Paperback)
Worth it. Daughter thought it was good for her subject.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars, 28 Sept. 2014
This review is from: Merchant of Venice (2010 edition): Oxford School Shakespeare (Paperback)
It is,for my daughter and haven't had chance to ask her
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4.0 out of 5 stars Useful, 14 April 2014
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This review is from: Merchant of Venice (2010 edition): Oxford School Shakespeare (Paperback)
As described. Useful and got me through the exam
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0 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Does the job, 12 Mar. 2012
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This review is from: Merchant of Venice (2010 edition): Oxford School Shakespeare (Paperback)
Good looking and strong but durable, does as it says on tin. Maybe a bit too tight, causing screen protector to come undone slightly but well worth money
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Merchant of Venice (2010 edition): Oxford School Shakespeare
Merchant of Venice (2010 edition): Oxford School Shakespeare by William Shakespeare (Paperback - 4 Mar. 2010)
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