n Shakespeare in Southern Africa - Women as Hamlet : performance and interpretation in theatre, film and fiction, Tony Howard : book reviews




Women as Hamlet (2009) is the paperback re-issue of Tony Howard's history of 'the woman Hamlet', which was first published in 2007. The work, begun in 1990, took a total of seventeen years to complete, and its publication date is contemporaneous with another important work relating to Hamlet studies and the body, Margareta de Grazia's 'Hamlet' without Hamlet (2007). It is divided into an introduction and three succeeding parts, including: a brief account of Angela Winkler's performance in Peter Zadek's Hamlet (1999); a history of performance up until Sarah Bernhardt's apotheosis; an analysis of the woman Hamlet on the avant-garde periphery of Europe; and a concluding discussion of her multiplication and refraction in popular culture. A combination of fictional re-conceptions of the female Hamlet, actresses' interpretations and myth - these accounts all interact and coalesce to finally enshrine the ephemeral qualities surrounding a transgendered approach to what Max Beerbohm conceived of as the great role.


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