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By: Peter Mercer

The Promised End

Pages: 156 Ratings:
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The Promised End explores how the endings of Shakespeare’s tragedies work – how, in effect, they resist conventional closure. It looks back from the endings of five plays – Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet, Othello, Macbeth, and King Lear – to explore how their structures of action, imagery and the interaction of different genres – comedy, tragedy and romance – bring them to conclusions that are both inevitable and yet strangely incongruous, beyond explanation and moral understanding, almost too terrible to bear.

Peter Mercer was a lecturer in English Literature at the University of East Anglia for some thirty years. He later worked as an editor in magazine publishing. He is the author of Hamlet and the Acting of Revenge (Macmillan and University of Iowa Press).

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