Shakespeare and Crisis: One hundred years of Italian narratives explores how Shakespeare intervened in the Italian socio-political and cultural scene between his third and fourth centenaries, at times which were manifestly perceived as ‘critical’. It asks which complex mythopoietic processes contributed to shaping regimes of reading Shakespeare in response to those times of crisis. Crises of national identity during the Great War and the Fascist regime, crises of history in the 1970s, and crises of representation in the second half of the twentieth century extending into the new millennium constitute the three main areas of a discussion that ultimately aims at probing into the role of literature at times of crisis. The volume situates itself at the juncture of European Shakespeare studies and studies of Shakespeare and Italy. It addresses essential questions about the position of literature in society, offering at different levels new insights for scholars, students, and the general reader.
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