This book provides new insights into the theatrical and philosophical foundations of Shakespeare's history plays through a dialogue with the theories of Jacques Derrida, Michel Foucault, and Paul Ricoeur. Widely regarded to be anti-historical and nihilistic, Derrida and Foucault are shown to hold as responsible an attitude toward politics, truth, and art as Ricoeur. In the author's close critique of the ten plays, the sometimes conflicting views of these theorists reveal Shakespeare's developing historical understanding. Rather than promulgating a single historical perspective, Shakespeare's historiography plays afford pluralistic views of myth, politics, gender, sexuality, intersubjectivity, and religion because of their profound theatricality. Shakespeare's detour into history and culture thus joins the skeptical dimension of critical hermeneutics.
The Author: William M. Hawley received his Ph.D. in Dramatic Art from the University of California, Santa Barbara, in 1990.
William M Hawley
Peter Lang Publishing Inc
Date of Publication
Other Performing Arts
American University Studies Series 4: English Language and Literature