Cover: The One <i>King Lear</i>, from Harvard University PressCover: The One <i>King Lear</i> in HARDCOVER

The One King Lear

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Product Details


$49.50 • £39.95 • €44.50

ISBN 9780674504844

Publication Date: 04/04/2016


416 pages

6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches

7 halftones, 1 line illustration, 2 tables


[An] astonishingly energetic and groundbreaking interrogation of what [Vickers] calls The One King Lear.—Katherine Duncan-Jones, The Times Literary Supplement

Vickers’s argument for his theory might sound fanciful if it weren’t advanced with such expertise.—James Ryerson, The New York Times Book Review

Important…dauntingly impressive… [Vickers’s] profound understanding of Shakespeare’s play, as well as the vicissitudes of printing, allows him and us to appreciate fully how remarkably its innumerable and incomparable excellences have survived despite the several varieties of difficulty and misfortune in the publication of its two indispensable early editions… Vickers’s fine book only confirms the fact that Shakespeare never had any reason to become disaffected with his greatest play, nor to feel the slightest impulse to attempt to change it. King Lear remains, as it has been from the beginning, sui generis.—Richard Knowles, Shakespeare Quarterly

The strength of Vickers’s interpretation lies in his minute attention to the people in the play- and printing-houses who necessarily participated in the transmission of Shakespeare’s play into performance and print and to the crafts they practiced and the exigencies they faced.—Paul Werstine, Shakespeare Studies

Vickers’ study is a long-overdue and careful response to a situation in which the Folio text of Lear has generally come to be regarded, on insufficient evidence, as Shakespeare’s revision of his tragedy. In the absence of any authorial manuscripts of King Lear, Vickers takes on this issue in the only way it is possible to do so: by a painstaking, thoroughgoing analysis of the early modern technology through which these works have survived. I suspect that Vickers’ book will, for a long time, stand as a model for this kind of analysis, not only with Lear but also with the other First Folio plays published in quarto before 1623.—Leeds Barroll, Medieval and Renaissance Drama in England

This is a big, bold book, a major piece of scholarship for everyone to engage with. No one interested in the texts of Shakespeare’s work (and not only in the texts of King Lear) will be able to ignore it.—Peter Holland, University of Notre Dame

The One King Lear is concerned with one of the most interesting and controversial issues relating not just to the two texts of what some see as Shakespeare’s greatest play, but to the dramatist and his art. There is much to enjoy in this book, and much to learn from it.—H. R. Woudhuysen, University of Oxford

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