1st Edition

Shakespeare on Consent

By Amanda Bailey Copyright 2023
    210 Pages 27 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    210 Pages 27 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Choice is the defining issue of the twenty-first century. As the #MeToo movement extends its legal, social, and political reach around the world, the topic of consent has come under particular scrutiny. Shakespeare on Consent examines crises of consent on the early modern stage and argues that these dramatizations provide a framework for understanding the intersections of coercion, complicity, resistance, and agency.

    Beginning with the premise that consent serves as a lever of entitlement, Amanda Bailey introduces a Shakespeare well aware that liberal selfhood has never been universally available. Bailey brings Shakespeare’s work into conversation with the Penn State Sandusky scandal, the Bill Clinton–Monica Lewinsky affair, the rise of "somnophilia," Jordan Peele’s documentary on Lorena Bobbitt, Larry David’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, and Harvey Weinstein’s Shakespeare in Love, amongst others. Bailey considers who is denied access to the apparatus of consent, under what circumstances, and how consent is vitiated by race, class, ethnicity, sexuality, disability, and gender.

    Shakespeare on Consent is a wake-up call for all implicated in the injurious outcomes of consent and will inspire those wanting to mobilize choice in the service of social and political transformation.



    INTRODUCTION: Equity Without Justice

    CH 1: Rape of a Nation

    CH 2: Stamped by Shame

    CH 3: While You Were Sleeping

    CH 4: I May Destroy You

    CH 5: Make Sex Great Again

    CH 6: Weinstein in Love

    CODA: Refusal is the First Right



    Amanda Bailey is Professor and Chair of English at the University of Maryland, USA. Her publications include Affect Theory and Early Modern Texts: Politics, Ecologies, and Form (co-edited with Mario DiGangi, 2017), Of Bondage: Debt, Property, and Personhood in Early Modern England (2013), Masculinity and the Metropolis of Vice, 15501650 (co-edited with Roze Hentschell, 2010) and Flaunting: Style and the Subversive Male Body in Renaissance England (2007; 2019).