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(2016) Shakespeare and space, Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan.

Local habitations

hamlet at helsingør, juliet at verona

Balz Engler

pp. 257-267

This essay focuses on Shakespeare's impact on the material world in the shape of sites of collective and cultural memory—landscapes, castles, houses, shrines and graves—and on the spatial practices of literary tourism and pilgrimage. Inspired by Shakespeare's often vague and imaginative settings, Helsingør and Verona have become part of the Shakespeare trail. Significantly, however, the retrospectively constructed Shakespearean locations also demonstrate an erasure, a reduction of the intricacies of Romeo and Juliet and Hamlet into a single gesture or character stereotype such as Hamlet's "to be or not to be", and Juliet's "love until death". Examining their "local habitations", Balz Engler shows how certain characters have "left the book" and taken residence in a highly medialized cultural imaginary.

Publication details

DOI: 10.1057/978-1-137-51835-4_12

Full citation:

Engler, B. (2016)., Local habitations: hamlet at helsingør, juliet at verona, in I. Habermann & M. Witen (eds.), Shakespeare and space, Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 257-267.

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