The unabated fascination with Shakespeare's plays expresses itself in ever more ingenious and innovative ways. In our postmodern age, playwrights, dramatists and screenwriters have rewritten and revised their Shakespearean source texts in ways that contribute to the exploration of new styles and genres, including, for example, historiographic metafiction or the Theatre of the Absurd. Metadramatic adaptations therefore undoubtedly pay tribute to the ongoing influence of the bard on English literature but above and beyond that, they signify that any adaptation is also first and foremost a text in its own right – one that has as much to say about Shakespeare as about its own time.
Shakespeare, William. Hamlet. Eds. Ann Thompson and Neil Taylor. The Arden Shakespeare, third series. London A&C Black, 2005. Stoppard, Tom. Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead. London: Faber and Faber, 1973.
Shakespeare, William. Romeo and Juliet. Ed. René Weiss. The Arden Shakespeare, third series. London: A&C Black, 2012. Shakespeare in Love. Dir. John Madden. Perf. Joseph Finnes, Gwyneth Paltrow, Judi Dench, and Geoffrey Rush. Miramax and Universal Pictures, 1998.