Explore Shakespeare’s plays in relation to the social, political and cultural context in which they were written, and in which they have been interpreted over the last four centuries.
The character of Ophelia has fascinated directors, actresses, writers and painters since she first appeared on stage. Here Elaine Showalter discusses Ophelia's madness as a particularly female malady, showing how from Shakespeare's day to our own Ophelia has been used both to reflect and to challenge evolving ideas about female psychology and sexuality.Read more
Explore Shakespeare’s plays by theme.
Explore a selection of collection items that relate to Shakespeare and the context in which his plays were written.
Explore 15 of Shakespeare’s plays.
Romeo and Juliet begins with a Chorus setting the scene in the Italian city of Verona, where the Capulets and the ...
The title page of the first quarto printing of The Merchant of Venice (1600) gives a succinct summary of the plot: ...