From Longmans new Cultural Edition series, Hamlet, edited by Constance Jordan, includes the play and contextual materials from the era of Shakespeare. This edition represents Shakespeares text as it appears in the most authoritative of early editions, the Folio, published in 1623, and it supplies students with useful footnotes to the interpretation of the text. It also includes brief samples of works by Shakespeares contemporaries in a section entitled Contexts; which will help students understand the historical setting and cultural ideas that helped shape the meaning of Shakespeares play.
By listening to these voices from the past, students can approach the play with some knowledge of why Hamlet asks the questions he does and of why the character himself, the creation of a distant century, also seems so much a part of our own world. The Longman Cultural Edition series is composed of teaching texts edited by prominent scholars. In addition to the recently published Cultural Editions Frankenstein, Pride and Prejudice, and Othello, titles in the series for this year include Dickens Hard Times, Beowulf, and Oscar WildesThe Picture of Dorian Gray.