Full comprehension of the plays is gained from the line-by-line modern English translation given on facing pages. Understanding of the plays is increased as pupils take part in the variety of related activities included in each book. The significance of the plays is reinforced by sections discussing Shakespeare's life, works and theatre. Pupils are encouraged to understand the language, characters, structure and themes of the plays by completion of practical exercises.
This collection of essays is aimed at readers who are looking for new ways of thinking about Shakespeare's most controversial play and new ways of thinking about their own practice as critics. The collection offers a spectrum of the more recent writings on the play that opens up its historical, cultural, and political significance and also serves to demonstrate some of the ways in which contemporary criticism is both based upon critical theory and is also about the practice of criticism.