How Shakespeare Changed Everything

Stephen Marche

Published by Harper Perennial, 2012
ISBN 10: 0061965545 / ISBN 13: 9780061965548
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Synopsis: Esquirecolumnist Stephen Marche gives an expansive and exciting look at WilliamShakespeare’s pervasive influence on every aspect of modern culture—showing ushow we can find Shakespeare even where we least expect him. In the spirit ofAlain de Botton’s How Proust Can Change Your Life,Marche reveals how Shakespeare’s influence is everywhere—from politics topsychotherapy, broadway to botany, emo teenagers to outrageous baby names, even zoology (didyou know it’s the Bard who is responsible for the starlings terrorizing NewYork City’s Central Park?). Fans of literary trivia and readers of StephenGreenblatt’s Will in the World and Bill Bryson’s Shakespeare: TheWorld as Stage will be captivated by Marche’s artful reading of how everyday can bring a fresh reading of the Immortal Bard of Avon.

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Shakespeare is everywhere

Nearly four hundred years after his death, Shakespeare permeates our everyday lives: from the words we speak to the teenage heartthrobs we worship to the political rhetoric spewed by the twenty-four-hour news cycle. In the pages of this wickedly clever little book, Esquire columnist Stephen Marche uncovers the hidden influence of Shakespeare in our culture, including these fascinating tidbits:

  • Shakespeare coined more than 1,700 words, including hobnob, glow, lackluster, and dawn.
  • Paul Robeson's 1943 performance as Othello on Broadway was a seminal moment in black history.
  • Tolstoy wrote an entire book about Shakespeare's failures as a writer.
  • In 1936, the Nazi Party tried to claim Shakespeare as a Germanic writer.
  • Without Shakespeare, the book titles Infinite Jest, The Sound and the Fury, and Brave New World wouldn't exist.
  • The name Jessica was first used in The Merchant of Venice.
  • Freud's idea of a healthy sex life came directly from the Bard.

Stephen Marche has cherry-picked the sweetest and most savory historical footnotes from Shakespeare's work and life to create this unique celebration of the greatest writer of all time.

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Title: How Shakespeare Changed Everything
Publisher: Harper Perennial
Publication Date: 2012
Binding: Paperback
Book Condition: Used: Good

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