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Shakespeare and platonic beauty

Author: John Vyvyan
Publisher: London : Shepheard-Walwyn (Publishers) Ltd., ©2013.
Series: Vyvyan's Shakespearean trilogy, 3
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
Looking at some of the Shakespearean comedies, author John Vyvyan suggests they express a consistent, profoundly Christian philosophy of life based on the Platonic ideas of beauty and love. In A Midsummer Night's Dream, As You Like It, and All's Well That Ends Well, the heroines bring to life the idea of love as the force that is awakened in the world by beauty which then leads the soul to perfection. Vyvyan  Read more...
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Named Person: William Shakespeare; William Shakespeare; William Shakespeare; William Shakespeare; William Shakespeare; William Shakespeare; William Shakespeare
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: John Vyvyan
ISBN: 0856832944 9780856832949
OCLC Number: 830368438
Description: viii, 221 pages ; 22 cm
Contents: Theseus and Hippolyta --
The classical background --
Plato in Florence --
An introduction to the heroine as the heavenly Venus --
"A midsummer night's dream" --
"As you like it" --
"All's well that ends well" --
"Troilus annd Cressida" --
Conclusion --
Selected stanzas from "An hymne in honour of beautie" --
Passages from Marsilio Ficino's commentary on the "Symposium" --
Pico Della Mirandola's version of The ascent.
Series Title: Vyvyan's Shakespearean trilogy, 3
Responsibility: John Vyvyan.

Abstract:

Looking at some of the Shakespearean comedies, author John Vyvyan suggests they express a consistent, profoundly Christian philosophy of life based on the Platonic ideas of beauty and love. In A Midsummer Night's Dream, As You Like It, and All's Well That Ends Well, the heroines bring to life the idea of love as the force that is awakened in the world by beauty which then leads the soul to perfection. Vyvyan believes that for Shakespeare, love was preeminent over human ideas of justice, that self-discovery was a supreme human experience, and that breaking faith with the ideal--as Agamemnon, Cressida, and Hector all do in Troilus and Cressida --sowed the seeds of tragedy. The author's recognition of Shakespeare's use of allegory enables him to make sense of certain developments in these plays that seem weak or absurd from the psychological standpoint. He does not suggest that Shakespeare's philosophy is the most important thing about his plays; it is simply one thing about them that ought to be known. The recognition of this philosophy enhances enjoyment of the plays, giving them a new dimension and richness. This edition contains a list of the author's Shakespearean references and an enhanced index.

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"More perceptive and convincing than a great deal that has ever been written on the subject . . . close and attentive scholarship . . . shrewd and ingenious observations." --A. L. Rowse, "Daily Read more...

 
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