Shakespeare and Marx

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OUP Oxford, Sep 30, 2004 - Literary Criticism - 176 pages
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Marxist cultural theory underlies much teaching and research in university departments of literature and has played a crucial role in the development of recent theoretical work. Feminism, New Historicism, cultural materialism, postcolonial theory, and queer theory all draw upon ideas about cultural production which can be traced to Marx, and significantly each also has a special relation with Renaissance literary studies. This book explores the past and continuing influence of Marx's ideas in work on Shakespeare. Marx's ideas about cultural production and its relation to economic production are clearly explained, together with the standard terminology and concepts such as base/superstructure, ideology, commodity fetishism, alienation, and reification. The influence of Marx's ideas on the theory and practice of Shakespeare criticism and performance is traced from the Victorian age to the present day. The continuing importance of these ideas is illustrated via new Marxist readings of King Lear, Hamlet, The Merchant of Venice, Timon of Athens, The Comedy of Errors, All's Well that Ends Well, and The Winter's Tale.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
1 Shakespeare Marx Production and the World of Ideas
7
2 Marxs Influence on Shakespeare Studies to 1968
46
3 Marxs Influence on Shakespeare Studies since 1968
69
4 Shakespeare and Marx Today
98
Marx and Genetics
138
Further Reading
150
Works Cited
153
Index
163
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