The Myths of Bold Visual and Conservative Verbal Interpretations of Shakespeare on Today’s Japanese Stage

  • Ryuta Minami
Part of the Reproducing Shakespeare book series (RESH)


Japanese productions of Shakespeare’s plays are almost always discussed with an exclusive focus upon their visual and physical aspects without any due considerations to their verbal elements. Most Japanese stage performances of Shakespeare use vernacular translations of Shakespeare. This chapter analyses Nakayashiki Norihito’s all-female productions of Hamlet (2011) and Macbeth (2012) in the historical contexts of Japanese Shakespeare translation. I will look at the ways in which the deliberately chosen rude or rough verbal expressions have enabled Nakayashiki not only to focus upon actresses’ corporeality but also to question the conventional ideas of Shakespeare’s language in the vernacular. The myth of Shakespeare as an icon of high culture has been challenged in verbal as well as theatrical terms.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ryuta Minami
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of Communication StudiesTokyo University of EconomicsTokyoJapan

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