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Shylock: A Legend and Its Legacy Paperback – January 4, 1994

5.0 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Amazingly, Shylock is in only five scenes in the Merchant of Venice. Yet, as pointed out by Gross, the theater critic for the London Sunday Telegraph , his impact and significance transcend his physical presence, so much so that his name and "pound of flesh" idea are almost universally known. In the first part of this character/cultural study, Gross examines the antecedents of Shylock and the play, and his development within the play. The second part considers "interpretations" both theatrical and literary in England and America until World War II; the third part considers Shylock more broadly as a touchstone (e.g., how his "type" is used by the Victorians--Trollope's Lopez, Dickens's Riah, Ruskin's use of him in Munera Pulveris ). There's not much new here--Shylock and Merchant of Venice have both consumed tons of interpretive ink--but the book is readable and puts a lot of sundry information in one place. For collections heavy in Shakespeariana and/or Judaica.
- Robert E. Brown, Onondaga Cty. P.L., Syracuse, N.Y.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Gross sheds new light on Shakespeare and anti-Semitism in this valuable and entertaining study of attitudes toward the Bard's Jewish usurer.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Touchstone (January 4, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0671883860
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671883867
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.9 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,153,223 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Michael Sharpston on February 21, 2005
Format: Hardcover
John Gross' work is very readable, yet also very scholarly. We learn about the real situation of Jews in Venice, the real role of "usury" (despite official attitudes to it) in Elizabethan England. The ties to traditional dark Medieval myths about Jews are explained. Also we are told about famous performances of Shylock, including by Jewish actors. Anyone interested in the stage, Shakespeare, great characters, or Jews and the myths about them ... will want to own this book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
this book has been absolutely fantastic for the class i am taking in Shakespeare! John Gross brings up ideas that are new to me and to the class...Easy reading, clearly set out ideas..I recommend it to all students of literature. Glad I found it...Million Appell
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By MB on October 25, 2015
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Nice book
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