November 29, 2017

Conversation on Hamlet At Labyrinth Books

Rhodri Lewis and Leonard Barkan will be talking about Lewis’s book Hamlet and the Vision of Darkness (Princeton Univ. Press) at Labyrinth Books on Wednesday, December 6 at 6 p.m.

Rhodri Lewis and Leonard Barkan will discuss Lewis’s radical new interpretation of the most famous play in the English language. By exploring Shakespeare’s engagements with the humanist traditions of early modern England and Europe, Lewis reveals a Hamlet unseen for centuries: an innovative, coherent, and exhilaratingly bleak tragedy in which the governing ideologies of Shakespeare’s age are scrupulously upended.

Princeton University professor Anthony Grafton writes, “This spectacular book teaches us to read Hamlet as a searing critique of the humanist verities that Shakespeare and his audience had mastered at school —―principles and practices that had guided generations. Rhodri Lewis’s reading of Hamlet revises both our intellectual and our literary histories of late Renaissance England.”

Rhodri Lewis is lecturer with rank of professor of English at Princeton University. He is the author of Language, Mind and Nature: Artificial Languages in England from Bacon to Locke and William Petty on the Order of Nature. Leonard Barkan is professor of comparative literature at Princeton. His books include Unearthing the Past: Archaeology and Aesthetics in the Making of Renaissance Culture; Michelangelo: A Life on Paper; Mute Poetry, Speaking Pictures; and Berlin for Jews: A Twenty-First Century Companion.