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Home :: Archive :: 2005 :: August ::
Shakespop
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 16.1384  Thursday, 25 August 2005

From: 		Al Magary <
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Date: 		Wednesday, 24 Aug 2005 17:46:51 -0700
Subject: 	Today's Shakespop Item

Yesterday's Shakespop item was, er, beyond the fringe, as these things 
may always be perceived.  Today's item comes about by way of the 
publicity attending on Amazon's packaging of all 1,082 Penguin Classics 
titles, priced at only $7.989.50--a savings of $5,326.34 plus free 
shipping and unpacking.  (As of Wed. 5 pm PDT, according to an Amazonian 
on NPR, "fewer than 10" people had put in orders.)  The statistics are 
of course amazing--half a million pages, 700 pounds, etc.--but this list 
may be particularly interested in how the Pelican Shakespeare editions 
stand among the 100 bestselling titles:

28. Hamlet
41. Romeo & Juliet
47. Macbeth
52. Midsummer Night's Dream
64. Othello
76. King Lear
82. Merchant of Venice
83. The Tempest
84. Much Ado About Nothing
98. Taming of the Shrew

The Bard gets 10% of the list--not too shabby--but first appears at #28. 
  Other playwrights:  Arthur Miller comes in high, at #3 and #5, 
Sophocles at #9, Voltaire at #18, and Aeschylus at #27.  Shaw, Wilde, 
and Euripides are below Shakespeare.

The list of 100, at 
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/feature/-/570461/002-0588478-6777658 
no doubt demonstrates the commercial power of curriculum selection 
criteria--for example, a good many short books.  Some of the topsellers 
are fairly unusual:  Swann's Way at #31, Sun Tzu's Art of War at #39, 
rediscovered American writer Kate Chopin at #65, Ernst Junger's WWI 
memoir Storm of Steel at #81,  The Ramayana at #94, a pair by Nietzsche 
at #97.

Cheers,
Al Magary

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