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Pressures of war, ideology, and the crises of late capitalism
Boika Sokolova
,
Kirilka Stavreva
, and
J. C. Bulman

Some thirty years ago, James C. Bulman finished his study of the major performances of The Merchant of Venice for this series with a chapter which anticipated the global turn in Shakespeare performance scholarship. In this spirit, the chapters that follow include a diversity of traditions, opening up the British focus of Part I . We discuss primarily continental

in Shakespeare in Performance
Steve Sohmer

Emilia Bassano Lanier provided the model for Shakespeare’s Jessica in The Merchant of Venice. A dark Venetian Jew When Baptiste Bassano, Venetian converso Jew and court musician, died in 1576, he left his daughter Emilia penniless; she would receive a legacy of £100 only on attaining the age of twenty-one. For reasons

in Reading Shakespeare’s mind
Boika Sokolova
,
Kirilka Stavreva
, and
J. C. Bulman

It is hard to imagine a starker contrast in approaches to The Merchant of Venice than that between the stagings of Max Reinhardt and Peter Zadek, two Jewish artists who were paragons of German (and European) director’s theatre during, respectively, the first and third part of the twentieth century. Whereas Reinhardt’s quasi-utopian vision of

in Shakespeare in Performance
Boika Sokolova
,
Kirilka Stavreva
, and
J. C. Bulman

The history of The Merchant of Venice on film is truly a global one. It started with a spate of silent shorts and has produced four feature-length cinematic adaptations: The Jew of Mestri (Germany, 1923), The Merchant of Venice (France and Italy, 1953), The Maori Merchant of Venice (New Zealand, 2001), and William

in Shakespeare in Performance
Author:

This book will come as a revelation to Shakespeare scholars everywhere. It reveals the identity of the playwright and Shakespeare’s colleague behind the mask of Jaques in As You Like It. It pinpoints the true first night of Twelfth Night and reveals why the play’s performance at the Inns of Court was a momentous occasion for shakespeare. It also the identities Quinapalus, the Vapians, Pigrogromitus and Feste, as well as the ‘Dark Lady’ of the Sonnets and the inspiration for Jessica in The Merchant of Venice. And it solves Shakespeare’s greatest riddle: the meaning of M.O.A.I. in Twelfth Night. In sum, this book reveals William Shakespeare as a far more personal writer than we have ever imagined.

Ovine tropes and the Golden Fleece in The Merchant of Venice
Atsuhiko Hirota

The Merchant of Venice abounds in allusions to the myth of the Golden Fleece, unlike the rest of the canon where key terms associated with the myth are rarely mentioned explicitly. The myth circulated widely in sixteenth-century Europe. Familiarity with its classical versions, known through Ovid’s Metamorphoses and Seneca’s Medea , in Latin and vernacular translation

in Interweaving myths in Shakespeare and his contemporaries
Boika Sokolova
,
Kirilka Stavreva
, and
J. C. Bulman

In performance, perhaps no play by Shakespeare has been subject to the pressures of history – or, in the words of Jonathan Miller, ‘held hostage to contemporary issues’ ( New York Times , 22 February 1981) – more forcibly than The Merchant of Venice . Particularly since Irving’s landmark production of 1879, treatment of Shylock has focused the

in Shakespeare in Performance
Christian and Jewish eudaimonism in The Merchant of Venice
Sara Coodin

IN THE OPENING LINES of Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice , Antonio insists upon the profound effects of his sadness – and upon his utter ignorance of its causes. In sooth, I know not why I am so sad, It wearies me, you say it wearies you; But how

in The Renaissance of emotion
The Merchant of Venice in Mandatory Palestine (1936) and the Venetian Ghetto (2016)
Boika Sokolova
,
Kirilka Stavreva
, and
J. C. Bulman

Among the plethora of interpretations of The Merchant of Venice in theatre and film productions across the globe, two stand out for their part in broader, intentional debates on the significance of ‘the most famous fictional Jew in Western culture’ at pivotal moments in history (Bassi, New Places , p. 164). These debates arose from the

in Shakespeare in Performance
Abstract only
Felicity Dunworth

any individual theatrical characterisation. Its influence is evident, for example, in a subtle reference to a wife and mother in Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice : S hylock: Out upon her! Thou torturest me Tubal, it was my turquoise, I had it of Leah when I was a bachelor: I would not have given it for a wilderness of monkeys. (3.1.111–113) 2

in Mothers and meaning on the early modern English stage