King John | Critical Essay by Eugene M. Waith

This literature criticism consists of approximately 28 pages of analysis & critique of King John.
This section contains 8,425 words
(approx. 29 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Robert C. Jones

Critical Essay by Eugene M. Waith

SOURCE: “King John and the Drama of History,” in King John and Henry VIII: Critical Essays, edited by Frances A. Shirley, Garland Publishing, 1988, pp. 31-50.

In the following essay, originally published in 1978, Waith examines critical and popular reaction to King John through the centuries. Waith maintains that the current emphasis on the political and historical themes of the play obscure its power.

King John is a play which, in our time, there have been few to love and very few to see.1 The notable revival of interest in Shakespeare's history plays has left it, along with Henry VIII, almost untouched on the Shakespearean bookshelf and rarely performed. A review in the London Times (11 March 1958) of a Marlowe Society production began: “There are plenty of good reasons why King John should be hazier...

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This section contains 8,425 words
(approx. 29 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Robert C. Jones