A Midsummer Night's Dream is perhaps Shakespeare's most popular comedy, and also a profound, archetypal play. The introduction describes the two main traditions in the stage history, one emphasising charm and innocence, the other stressing darker suggestions of violence and sexuality, and relates them to similar traditions in critical interpretation, showing that both are necessary to a full understanding of the play. For this updated edition the editor has added a new section to the introduction which takes account of recent important professional theatre productions and scholarly criticism on the play.
The New Cambridge Shakespeare appeals to readers worldwide for its up-to-date scholarship and emphasis on performance. The series, edited by an expert international team, includes all Shakespeare's plays, sonnets and poems, presented in attractively designed volumes. modernised texts ; full notes and lively introductions ; informative illustrations ; precise details of staging and performance.