Paul Cantor

View By Chapter
  • CH. 1 : Shakespearean Beginnings

    Paul Cantor recalls his Shakespeare-obsessed youth in Brooklyn and how he came to see Shakespeare as a “political” thinker.

    00:15 - 07:04

  • CH. 2 : The Settings of Shakespeare’s Plays

    Contemporary directors often change the localities and eras of Shakespeare’s plays for “creative” purposes. Cantor explains why this is a mistake.

    07:04 - 11:39

  • CH. 3 : Comedy and Tragedy

    According to Cantor, Shakespeare was unique in world history in his ability to write both comedy and tragedy. How did he do it?

    11:39 - 18:15

  • CH. 4 : Roman Plays

    Kristol and Cantor discuss how Shakespeare used plays set in ancient Rome to explore themes such as republicanism, political greatness, and tyranny.

    18:15 - 29:10

  • CH. 5 : Rulers and Regimes

    Why are Shakespeare’s plays set in different contexts and locales? In part, says Cantor, to show how political regimes shape human character.

    29:10 - 41:04

  • CH. 6 : Christian Plays

    How does Christianity impact politics? Shakespeare explores this theme in many plays, including Hamlet. Cantor and Kristol discuss.

    41:05 - 50:16

  • CH. 7 : The Theological-Political Problem

    In Macbeth, Othello, and The Merchant of Venice Shakespeare explores the relation of religion and politics. Cantor explains.

    50:17 - 1:03:11

  • CH. 8 : The English History Plays

    What do Shakespeare’s history plays teach us about different types of regimes? Paul Cantor shares his perspective.

    00:15 - 24:11

  • CH. 9 : Measure for Measure

    Cantor analyzes the treatment of religion, sex, and politics in one of Shakespeare’s most enigmatic plays.

    24:11 - 30:25

  • CH. 10 : The Comedies

    Paul Cantor explains how Shakespeare sought to reform the medieval view of love through his comedies.

    30:25 - 59:06

  • CH. 11 : Tragedy, Comedy, and The Tempest

    Considering “The Tempest,” Cantor explains why Shakespeare had the unique ability to transcend the divide between comedy and tragedy.

    59:06 - 1:18:43