Reviews

  • "In this brilliant, beautifully organized, exceedingly readable study of Shakespeare’s tyrants and their tyrannies—their dreadful narcissistic follies, their usurpations and their craziness and their cruelties, their arrogant incompetence, their paranoid viciousness, their falsehoods and their flattery hunger—Stephen Greenblatt manages to elucidate obliquely our own desperate (in Shakespeare’s words) “general woe”."

    PHILIP ROTH
  • "Brilliant, timely"

    MARGARET ATWOOD, on Twitter
  • "A scintillating book, uncannily illuminating about current politics, as perceptive about the victims of tyranny as it is about the tyrants themselves."

    Nicholas Hytner, former Artistic Director of the Royal National Theatre
  • "Brisk and highly readable"

    Jonathan Bate, New Statesman
  • "Brilliant"

    Bryan Appleyard, Sunday Times
  • "[Tyrant] illuminates our present political situation by analysing the traits of Shakespearean tyrants – and their mobs … nimble and intriguing … The 45th president is not mentioned anywhere by name in Tyrant , but the analogies are clear … illuminating."

    Alasdair Lees, Independent
  • "Excellent."

    Eliot A. Cohen, Washington Post Sunday
  • "Ardent and involving ... Greenblatt's points are well made and the implicit parallels are easily drawn ... acutely observed."

    John Stubbs, Literary Review
  • "Brilliant ... [a] spikily insightful book"

    Daniel Swift, Spectator
  • "A brilliant, vivid, incisive, resonant account of Shakespeare's analysis of politics, and the corruption and abuses of power. He does not need to make contemporary parallels, they are so evidently before us."

    Greg Doran, Artistic Director of the Royal Shakespeare Company