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"Brilliant, beautifully organized, exceedingly readable."—Philip Roth
World-renowned Shakespeare scholar Stephen Greenblatt explores the playwright’s insight into bad (and often mad) rulers.
Examining the psyche—and psychoses—of the likes of Richard III, Macbeth, Lear and Coriolanus, Greenblatt illuminates the ways in which William Shakespeare delved into the lust for absolute power and the disasters visited upon the societies over which these characters rule. Tyrant shows that Shakespeare’s work remains vitally relevant today, not least in its probing of the unquenchable, narcissistic appetites of demagogues and the self-destructive willingness of collaborators who indulge them.