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As You Like It Paperback – Jun 18 1998


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 80 pages
  • Publisher: Dover Publications (June 18 1998)
  • Language: French
  • ISBN-10: 0486404323
  • ISBN-13: 978-0486404325
  • Product Dimensions: 20.9 x 13.2 x 0.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 86 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #159,496 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

An excellent introduction to Shakespeare for the junior reader.—The School Librarian --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Book Description

John Dover Wilson's New Shakespeare, published between 1921 and 1966, became the classic Cambridge edition of Shakespeare's plays and poems until the 1980s. The series, long since out-of-print, is now reissued. Each work contains a lengthy and lively introduction, main text, and substantial notes and glossary. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Cry the Name on March 27 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Whew...this story has an even faster plot turn about than Austen's Pride and Prejudice. If one is not careful, you--like me, may suffer "plausibility whiplash." That said, As You Like It is a delightful example of Shakespearean comedy. Jaques is one of my favorites from Shakespeare's stable of characters. Things get renewed, folks get married, fortunes are restored. Good Stuff. I must also mention how much I like these Signet Classic Shakespeare texts. They are darn fine (good intros, critical pieces, and source info) and dirt cheap.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By MrSherlockHolmes on Nov. 20 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This has to be one of Shakespeare's gayest plays (no pun intended). Whatever tragedy may have occurred in the beginning - at the court - is totally forgotten when the action moves to the forest, where Robin-hood like; a banished duke, a melancholy philosopher and a cast of love sick characters act out their lives on the stage.
Much of the play is centered on Rosalind - the female lead in 'drag' - who falls in love with the third son of a nobleman, Orlando, who has been cheated out of his inheritance by his eldest brother. Her father, the duke, has also been cheated by a brother and is now living in the forest with his 'merry men'. Her short stay at court is disrupted when her uncle changes his mind about her and 'graciously' gives her a few days to get out of the kingdom. This event leads to her escape into the forests with her cousin, the daughter of the duke at Court. As the play progresses more and more characters end up in the forest which becomes the stage where all these actors play out their parts - to paraphrase Jacques.
As a reader you sometimes have to suspend rationality in order to swallow some of the larger than life events that occur in this story (The snake - Lion - Lion killer scene for example). It's not meant to be taken too seriously I'd imagine, just a play about love and romance and the lengths one will go to because of love. The only rational person in this play seems to be the Malvolio-like Jacques, whose deer hugging antiques (forerunner of modern day Environmentalism?) and refusal to take part in the revelry make him the butt of the other's jokes. Even the clown seems to have been pierced by Cupid's arrows as he too weds a country 'wench', something unheard of in the other plays where the clowns all seem to be eunuchs.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Donald Mitchell #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on Oct. 14 2001
Format: Audio Cassette
As You Like It has many qualities to attract readers and audiences. Rosalind is one of the great heroines of all romantic literature. The play has more outstanding speeches than almost any other that has ever been written. Astonishing plot complications are quickly resolved in the simplest possible way, reflecting a playwright's tour de force. The Forest of Arden appears as a character in creating a magical atmosphere whereby all perceptions change, and all are healed. Right wins out, especially in drawing on good character . . . even from formerly badly behaving people. And for those who love marriages, this book has one of the most impressive ceremonies of all time in literature. Humans have never looked nobler in the end than in this play. Yet the play also abounds with some of the greatest lines of Shakespeare's fools that cause all of us to see that humility is more called for than pride or ambition. Certainly, As You Like It will make you feel the presence of an unmatched genius, that should inspire even the most arrogant to feel humbled in the Bard's presence.
My recommendation is that you first see a performance (whether in person, or on a recording). If that's not possible, try for an audio. Many outstanding actors have been taped. After you have the sights and sounds of the play firmly in mind, then read the play. You'll find that your earlier experiences will unlock more of the play's depths, imagery and pleasures for you.
Where in life is being true to your word very important? How can you improve your life by being more reliable in this way?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By darragh o'donoghue on July 5 2001
Format: Paperback
'As you like it' is one of those Shakespearean plays that is considered 'great' by critics, but never really found true popular acclaim, perhaps due to the absence of charismatic characters (the romantic hero is particularly wet) or compelling dilemmas.
It shares many features with the great comedies - the notion of the forest as a magic or transformative space away from tyrannical society ('A Midsummer night's dream'); the theme of unrequited love and gender switching from 'Twelfth night'; the exiled Duke and his playful daughter from 'The Tempest'. But these comparisons only point to 'AYLI''s comparative failure (as a reading experience anyway) - it lacks the magical sense of play of the first; the yearning melancholy of the second; or the elegiac complexity of the third.
It starts off brilliantly with a first act dominated by tyrants: an heir who neglects his younger brother, and a Duke who resents the popularity of his exiled brother's daughter (Rosalind). there is an eccentric wrestling sequence in which a callow youth (Orlando) overthrows a giant. Then the good characters are exiled to Arden searching for relatives and loved ones.
Theoretically, this should be good fun, and you can see why post-modernist critics enjoy it, with its courtiers arriving to civilise the forest in the language of contemporary explorers, and the gender fluidity and role-play; but, in truth, plot is minimal, with tiresomely pedantic 'wit' to the fore, especially when the melancholy scholar-courtier Jacques and Fool Touchstone are around, with the latter's travesties of classical learning presumably hilarious if you're an expert on Theocritus and the like.
As an English pastoral, 'AYLI' doesn't approach Sidney's 'Arcadia' - maybe it soars on stage. (Latham's Arden edition is as frustrating as ever, with scholarly cavilling creating a stumbling read, and an introduction which characteristically neuters everything that makes Shakespeare so exciting and challenging)
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