The Merchant of Venice | Critical Essay by John Lyon

This literature criticism consists of approximately 21 pages of analysis & critique of The Merchant of Venice.
This section contains 6,084 words
(approx. 21 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by John Lyon

Critical Essay by John Lyon

SOURCE: “Responses, Sources, Contexts,” in Harvester New Critical Introductions to Shakespeare: ‘The Merchant of Venice,’ Harvester/Wheatsheaf, 1988, pp. 9-28.

In the essay below, Lyon describes The Merchant of Venice as a “controversial play.” He demonstrates that literary critics have been widely divided concerning Shakespeare's views on anti-Semitism, and concludes that the play needs to be examined not only from the point of view of Shakespeare's era, but also within the context of his other plays.

The safest place to begin with so controversial a play as The Merchant of Venice is with effects rather than causes. In a brilliantly economical survey of the play's criticism, Norman Rabkin recently identified the essential quality of The Merchant of Venice to be its capacity to provoke a welter of diverging and opposing responses...

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This section contains 6,084 words
(approx. 21 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by John Lyon