Four Comedies: The Taming of the Shrew, A Midsummer Night's Dream, As You Like it, Twelfth Night

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Shakespearean comedy has as much to do with the structure and movement of the drama as with the wit of its dialogue or the humour of its characters. In these four comedies there is a near-tragic crisis at which disaster or happiness may ensue, but the overriding force of goodwill and the power of understanding, love and generosity brings us through to a joyful conclusion. In comedy, 'sweet are the uses of adversity', so that the most bitter circumstances - exile, oppression, unrequited love - can give rise to higher feelings of friendship, respect, sympathy and acceptance. In this collection of Shakespeare's four most spirited comedies, each text comes complete with notes and an introduction, making this edition of particular value to students, scholars and theatre-goers.