How Shakespeare Changed Everything

By Stephen Marche
(HarperTorch, Hardcover, 9780061965531, 203pp.)

Publication Date: May 2011

List Price: $21.99*
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Description

Did you know the name Jessica was first used in The Merchant of Venice?

Or that Freud's idea of a healthy sex life came from Shakespeake?

Nearly four hundred years after his death, Shakespeare permeates our everyday lives: from the words we speak to the teenage heartthrobs we worship to the political rhetoric spewed by the twenty-four-hour news cycle.

In the pages of this wickedly clever little book, Esquire columnist Stephen Marche uncovers the hidden influence of Shakespeare in our culture, including these fascinating tidbits: Shakespeare coined over 1,700 words, including hobnob, glow, lackluster, and dawn. Paul Robeson's 1943 performance as Othello on Broadway was a seminal moment in black history. Tolstoy wrote an entire book about Shakespeare's failures as a writer. In 1936, the Nazi Party tried to claim Shakespeare as a Germanic writer. Without Shakespeare, the book titles Infinite Jest, The Sound and the Fury, and Brave New World wouldn't exist.

Stephen Marche has cherry-picked the sweetest and most savory historical footnotes from Shakespeare's work and life to create this unique celebration of the greatest writer of all time.




About the Author
Stephen Marche is a novelist and culture writer. For the past five years he has written a monthly column for Esquire magazine, A Thousand Words About Our Culture, as well as regular features and opinion pieces for The Atlantic, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The New Republic, and elsewhere. He lives in Toronto with his wife and children.
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