Shakespeare and the supernatural

Edited by Victoria Bladen and Yan Brailowsky

Shakespeare and the supernatural

Manchester University Press, 2020. ISBN: 978-1-5261-0906-4

Supernatural elements are of central significance in many of Shakespeare’s plays, contributing to their dramatic power and intrigue. Ghosts haunt political spaces and internal psyches, witches foresee the future and disturb the present, fairies meddle with love and a magus conjures a tempest from the elements. Although written and performed for early modern audiences, for whom the supernatural, whether sacred, demonic or folkloric, was part of the fabric of everyday life, the supernatural in Shakespeare continues to enthrall audiences and readers, and maintains its power to raise a range of questions in contemporary contexts.

This edited collection of twelve essays from an international range of contemporary Shakespeare scholars explores the supernatural in Shakespeare from a variety of perspectives and approaches, generating new knowledge and presenting hitherto unexplored avenues of enquiry across the Shakespearean canon.


Introduction: Shakespeare and the supernatural
Victoria Bladen and Yan Brailowsky

Part I: Embodying the supernatural

Part II: Haunted spaces

Part III: Supernatural utterance and haunted texts

Part IV: Magic, music and gender

Part V: Contemporary transformations