Shakespeare, Sex and Love, By Stanley Wells
Revealed: The Bard behind closed doors
Sunday 04 March 2012
The OUP has to get punters in somehow, and how better than with a sexy title?
It mirrors Stanley Wells's accessible approach, although his extensive historical knowledge and sensitive readings of the poems and plays always win out. So we learn that: Shakespeare was one of two Elizabethan sonneteers to write explicitly about sex (long-forgotten Richard Barnfield is the other); the sonnets reveal his own adultery, and picture a "flawed" object of desire for the first time; and the later plays depict tension between "raw sexual desire" and "virtuous, God-given desires". Wells establishes all this not to say something new about Shakespeare, but to emphasise the impact of the writer's life on the work.
TV reviewBroadcasting House was preparing for a visit from Prince Charles spoiler alert
Glastonbury Michael Eavis reveals final headline act 'most likely' British pair
Film Ewan McGregor joins star-studded Beauty and the Beast cast as Lumiere
TVThe Island with Bear Grylls under fire after male contestants kill and eat rare crocodile
Grace Dent on TV The Secret Life of the Pub is sexist, ageist and a breath of fresh air
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
- 2 Frank Lampard's face drops when Holly Willoughby introduces him as a 'Man City legend'
- 3 UK weather: Britain braced for snow as arctic air mass moves in
- 4 Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
- 5 General Election 2015: Stephen Hawking says he will vote Labour
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
Andrew Lloyd Webber: Phantom of the Opera writer mocked after issuing a warning about Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon
General election 2015: Labour will toughen hate crimes legislation surrounding Islamophobia
HSBC review into moving headquarters from UK 'underway'