Andrew Dickson’s startlingly original and joyously entertaining Worlds Elsewhere traverses centuries and continents to reveal Shakespeare and his works in a fantastic array of new guises…
‘Extraordinarily exhilarating … like no other Shakespeare criticism you have ever read’ (Margaret Drabble) ~ ‘A tour de force by any standards’ (David Crystal) ~ ‘Revelatory’ (James Shapiro) ~ ‘Brilliantly original’ (Michael Pye)
Anti-apartheid activist, Bollywood screenwriter, Nazi pin-up, hero of the Wild West: this is Shakespeare as you have never seen him before.
From the sixteenth-century Baltic to the American Revolution, from colonial India to the skyscrapers of modern-day Shanghai, Shakespeare’s plays appear at the most fascinating of times and in the most unexpected of places. No other writer’s work has been performed, translated, adapted and altered in such a remarkable variety of cultures and languages. But what is it about William Shakespeare – a man from Warwickshire who never once set foot outside England – that has made him at home in so many places around the globe?
Travelling across four continents, six countries and 400 years, Andrew Dickson takes us on a personal journey rich in insight and surprise. We enter the air-conditioned vault deep beneath Capitol Hill where the world’s largest collection of First Folios is stored; discover the shadowy history of Joseph Goebbels’s obsession with Shakespeare; and uncover the true story behind the scuffed edition in which Nelson Mandela and fellow Robben Island prisoners inscribed their names. Both cultural history and literary travelogue, Worlds Elsewhere is an attempt to understand how Shakespeare has become the international phenomenon he is – and why.