Item description for Pericles (Arden Shakespeare: Third Series) by Suzanne Gossett...
The Arden Shakespeare is the established scholarly edition of Shakespeare's plays. Now in its third series, Arden offers the best in contemporary scholarship. This edition of Pericles provides: - A clear and authoritative text, edited to the highest standards of scholarship - Detailed notes and commentary on the same page as the text - A full, illustrated introduction to the play's historical, cultural and performance contexts - A full index to the introduction and notes.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 1" Width: 5" Height: 7.5" Weight: 1.1 lbs.
Release Date Mar 31, 2004
ISBN 1903436850 ISBN13 9781903436851
Availability 1 units. Availability accurate as of Oct 27, 2016 03:09.
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More About Suzanne Gossett
Suzanne Gossett is Professor of English at Loyola University Chicago. She has edited Middleton's A Fair Quarrel for the Oxford Middleton, Shakespeare and Wilkins' Pericles for the Arden Shakespeare and Beaumont and Fletcher's Philaster for Arden Early Modern Drama. She is a General Editor of Arden Early Modern Drama and, with Gordon McMullan, General Textual Editor for the Norton Shakespeare 3.
Suzanne Gossett has an academic affiliation as follows - Loyola University, Chicago Loyola University of Chicago Loyola Univers.
Reviews - What do customers think about Pericles (Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)?
Very Good But Not Great Feb 17, 2006
This is a quirky play. The first act is quite disconnected to the rest of the play - a number of characters and the setting are not revisted again in the play and have little to do with remaining four acts. In the third act, the play finally stretches out, the language improves, there is more dramatic tension and interest. Indeed, the language is quite beautiful in the last three acts. The identification scenes are done nicely - it is clear what will happen (Pericles is going to find out that the young woman he is talking to is his daughter) but Shakespeare still manages to create tension and drama as the scene unfolds.
This edition has a good introduction, though it tends to linger over the co-authorship issue. It is widely believed that the play had a co-author for this play and the introduction goes through all the scholarly twist and turns of the debate on who was the co-author, and so forth. Still the introduction is helpful.
Not for Shakespeare Snobs Sep 6, 2004
Aside from people who just plain hate Shakespeare (and I don't get them at ALL), there are two types of Shakespeare Snobs. 1. The ones who think Shakespeare couldn't have written his plays because he wasn't born to nobility. These people are idiots. 2. The ones who idolize Shakespeare to the point where, if they don't like one of his plays, He Obviously Couldn't Have Written It -- he is incapable of writing something they don't like. Um... right. Let's apply this rationale to a latter day artist: since Charlie Chaplin made "The Gold Rush", he obviously had nothing to do with "A King in New York."
Geniuses grow and change with everything they do. The Beatles of "A Hard Day's Night" are not the Beatles of "A Day in the Life." Shakespeare spent his career shifting with the tides of what was Currently Popular. If he had lived in the mid 1970's, he would have followed a "Five Easy Pieces" with a "Star Wars". He rolled with the flow, but stamped his own creativity on every work. "Pericles" and the other later romances were written because that's what the current popular genre was. Box office dictated form; artistry dictated content.
Having recently read "Pericles", I have to say that it's one of the best, wackiest plays ever written. (I also think "Measure for Measure" is meant to be darkly funny, not brooding and angsty; but that's just me.) "Pericles" is what would happen if the writer of the Hee Haw "Gloom, Despair and Agony on Me" song had decided to make a Hope and Crosby Road picture. Unlike Shakespeare's tragic heroes and their Fatal Flaws, Pericles is just a poor schmuck (who happens to be a king) upon whom Murphy's Law comes down like a 50 pound hammer. EVERYTHING happens to this poor guy; your jaw drops at his second or third consecutive shipwreck.
The opening scene alone is worth the price of admission. Pericles has to guess the answer to the riddle of a very John Cleesian king. If he guesses right, he marries the princess. If he guesses wrong, he dies. Unfortunately, he guesses the right answer -- that the king is screwing his own daughter -- and he can't possibly say it out loud. He'll be killed if he answers and killed if he doesn't. It's a very Ralph Kramden hummena-hummena-hummena moment.
And the Act IV brothel scenes, where Pericles' daughter Marina has been sold into prostitution, are among the funniest scenes Shakespeare ever wrote. She doesn't just hold onto her virginity -- every male who tries to do her is coverted to the path of righteousness and the brothel is losing its shirt.
Nevertheless, you feel for the characters even while laughing at the outlandish sheer enormity of each new disaster; Bambi getting killed isn't funny. Bambi getting squashed by Godzilla is hysterical. The reconciliation scene is one of Shakespeare's most affecting.