“As a founder of the ‘new historicism’, Stephen Greenblatt has done more than establish a critical school; he has invented a habit of mind for literary criticism, which is indispensable to the temperament of our times, and crucial to the culture of the past. This admirable anthology represents the subtle play of pleasure and instruction, embodied in writings that move effortlessly between wonder and wisdom.” Homi K. Bhabha, Harvard University
“What a tribute to a long and distinguished career.”"For three decades Stephen Greenblatt has been the most articulate, thoughtful, and daring voice in early modern studies. The breadth of his reading is vast, the connections he makes are unexpected and often revelatory, and his writing is, quite simply, brilliant. Most of all, his willingness to take chances has made him an exciting and uniquely provocative critic. It is wonderful to have these classic essays in a single collection; and especially to have the most ephemeral of the pieces, the exquisite meditations on his visits to China and Laos, easily available. This is a beautifully conceived, indispensable volume." Stephen Orgel, Stanford University
Stephen Greenblatt is one of the most influential practitioners of new historicism. This Reader makes available in one volume Greenblatt's most important writings on culture, Renaissance studies, and Shakespeare. It also features occasional pieces on subjects as diverse as story-telling and miracles, demonstrating the range of his cultural interests. Taken together, the texts collected here dispel the idea that new historicism is antithetical to literary and aesthetic value.