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AMS Press, Inc.
25 Van Zant Street, Unit 1B3
Norwalk, CT 06855-1702

Comparative Excellence

New Essays on Shakespeare and Johnson

Edited by Eric Rasmussen and Aaron Santesso

LC 2006042900
ISBN-10: 0-404-64852-5
ISBN-13: 978-0-404-64852-7
Cloth $76.50
AMS Studies in the Eighteenth Century, No. 52

“[T]he individual essays are excellent and each has something new to say on the topic at hand. . . . This volume sheds new light not just on Shakespeare and Johnson but on eighteenth-century culture, literary criticism and theatre history.”
—Fiona Ritchie, Review of English Studies

“All of the essays have both the lightness of touch that characterizes the best conference papers and the magisterial command of the material that one would expect from these scholars.”
—Peter G. Platt, Studies in English Literature, 1500–1900

In this unique collection of new essays, internationally recognized Shakespearean scholars and equally eminent Johnsonians consider the relationship of these two central figures of the English canon—examining not just Shakespeare’s influence on Dr. Johnson but Johnson’s influence on the reception of Shakespeare.


David Bevington, “The Siren Call of Earlier Editorial Practice; or, How Dr. Johnson Failed to Respond Fully to His Own Intuitions About the Principles of Textual Criticism and Editing”
Robert DeMaria, Jr., “Samuel Johnson and the Saxonic Shakespeare”
Peter Holland, “Playing Johnson’s Shakespeare”
Nicholas Hudson, “Shakespeare’s Ghost: Johnson, Shakespeare, Garrick, and Constructing the English Middle-Class”
Jack Lynch, “The Dignity of an Ancient: Johnson Edits the Editors”
Anne McDermott, “Johnson’s Editing of Shakespeare in the Dictionary
Claude Rawson, “Cooling to a Gypsy’s Lust: Johnson, Shakespeare, and Cleopatra”
Stephen Orgel, “Johnson's Lear”
Aaron Santesso, “Johnson as Londoner”
Tiffany Stern, “‘I Do Wish That You Had Mentioned Garrick’: The Absence of David Garrick in Johnson’s Shakespeare”

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Comparative excellence : new essays on Shakespeare and Johnson / edited by Eric Rasmussen and Aaron Santesso.
     p. cm. — (AMS studies in the eighteenth century ; no. 52)
     Includes bibliographical references and index.
     ISBN 0-404-54852-5 (alk. paper)
     1. Shakespeare, William, 1564–1616—Influence.
     2. Shakespeare, William, 1564–1616—Contemporaries.
     I. Rasmussen, Eric, 1960–
     II. Santesso, Aaron, 1972–
     III. Series.
PR2965.C66 2007
822.3'3—dc22                                                       2006042900