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Dobson and Mantel say Shakespeare deniers need shrink

Michael Dobson, professor of Shakespeare Studies at Birkbeck College/ University of London wrote a review of James Shapiro’s Contested Will: Who Wrote Shakespeare? that was published yesterday in The Financial Times.

Dobson concluded his positive review with the comment:

Contested Will is a terrific read, but fully explaining the authorship controversy isn’t a job for a Shakespearean scholar: it’s a job for a pathologist.

In her review of Shapiro’s Contested Will published in The Guardian yesterday, Wolf Hall author Hilary Mantel has similar disdain for the psychological health of Shakespeare authorship inquirers:

Shapiro does not waste words on the preposterous, but he does uncover the mechanism of fantasy and projection that go to make up much of the case against Shakespeare.

The Guardian chose to illustrate Mantel’s review with a version of the pretty-boy Shakespeare in sumptuous lace collar. Everyone has latched onto this new visual version of the Bard, as if replacing that boring old Droeshout from the First Folio somehow soothes our fractious nerves.

About Linda Theil

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