Shakespeare and the Law: A Conversation Among Disciplines and Professions

Shakespeare and the Law: A Conversation Among Disciplines and Professions

By: Richard Strier (editor), Martha C. Nussbaum (editor), Bradin Cormack (editor), Daniel Brudney (contributor), David Bevington (contributor), Henry Henry (contributor), Kathy Eden (contributor), Fried Fried (contributor), Stanley Cavell (contributor), Stephen J. Breyer (contributor)Hardback

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William Shakespeare is inextricably linked with the law. Legal documents make up most of the records we have of his life, and trials, lawsuits, and legal terms permeate his plays. Gathering an extraordinary team of literary and legal scholars and even sitting judges, "Shakespeare and the Law" demonstrates that Shakespeare's thinking about legal concepts points to a deep engagement with the law's technical workings, its underlying premises, and its social effects. "Shakespeare and the Law" opens with three essays on law and literature that emphasize both the continuities and contrasts between the two fields. In its second section, the book considers Shakespeare's awareness of common law thinking and practice through examinations of Measure for Measure and Othella. Building on this question, in the third part a judge and a former solicitor general rule on Shylock's demand for enforcement of his odd contract, and two essays by literary scholars take contrasting views on whether Shakespeare could imagine a functioning legal system. The fourth section looks at how law enters into conversation with issues of politics and community, both in the plays and in our own world. The volume concludes with a freewheeling colloquy among Supreme Court Justice Stephen J. Breyer, Judge Richard A. Posner, Martha C. Nussbaum, and Richard Strier. Celebrating the sometimes fractious intellectual energy produced by scholars and practitioners tackling the question of Shakespeare and the law, this collection is a resource and provocation for further thinking and ongoing discussion.

About Author

Bradin Cormack is professor of English and director of the Nicholson Center for British Studies; Martha C. Nussbaum is the Ernst Freund Distinguished Service Professor in the Law School, the Department of Philosophy, and the Divinity School; and Richard Strier is the Frank L. Sulzberger Distinguished Service Professor in the Department of English and in the College, all at the University of Chicago.

Product Details

  • ISBN13: 9780226924939
  • Format: Hardback
  • Number Of Pages: 352
  • ID: 9780226924939
  • ISBN10: 0226924939

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