Shakespeare's 'Lady Editors'

A New History of the Shakespearean Text

English language

Published Dec. 6, 2021 by Cambridge University Press.

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The basic history of the Shakespearean editorial tradition is familiar and well-established. For nearly three centuries, men – most of them white and financially privileged – ensconced themselves in private and hard-to-access libraries, hammering out 'their' versions of Shakespeare's text. They produced enormous, learnèd tomes: monuments to their author's greatness and their own reputations. What if this is not the whole story? A bold, revisionist and alternative version of Shakespearean editorial history, this book recovers the lives and labours of almost seventy women editors. It challenges the received wisdom that, when it came to Shakespeare, the editorial profession was entirely male-dominated until the late twentieth century. In doing so, it demonstrates that taking these women's work seriously can transform our understanding of the history of editing, of the nature of editing as an enterprise, and of how we read Shakespeare in history.

3 editions