Place and Privilege in Shakespeare Scholarship and Pedagogy
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Place is everywhere in Shakespeare—an enduring fascination for the playwright himself and for critics studying his work. While here “place” primarily refers to geographic place, so too in this word is the echo of Shakespeare’s other most frequent use of the term, to refer to one’s familial, political, or social stature. This essay focuses on the intersection of these two meanings for teacher-scholars of Shakespeare, who often find themselves wrestling with how their geographic place influences their place within the firmament of Shakespeare studies. Considering how proximity to research libraries, rare book collections, and theatrical spaces influences scholarly and pedagogical choices, this essay reveals the ways in which the field’s past, present, and future is particularly inflected by concerns of place.