Shakespeare and the Mediterranean: Romeo and Juliet


Silvia Bigliazzi (ed)
Verona University
Emanuel Stelzer (ed)
University of Verona


Shakespeare and the Mediterranean, Romeo and Juliet


The Mediterranean of Shakespeare’s dramas is a vast geopolitical space. Historically, it spans from the Trojan war to Greek mythology and the ancient Roman empire; geographically, from Venice and Sicily to Cyprus and Turkey, from Greece to Egypt, the Middle East and North Africa. But it is also the Mediterranean of Renaissance Italian cities and Romeo and Juliet is a beautiful example of how exotic frontiers for an English gaze may be replaced by closer yet different cultural Mediterranean frames. The volume offers studies on the circulation of the story of Romeo and Juliet and its ancient archetypes in early modern Europe, from Greece to Italy, France and Spain, as well as on contemporary receptions and performances of Shakespeare’s play in Sicily, the Balkans, Israel and Jordan. 


  • Introduction
    Silvia Bigliazzi
  • Prologue
    Romeo and Juliet from a Mediterranean Perspective
    Emanuel Stelzer
  • River, Town, and Wilderness:
    Notes on Some Hellenistic Narrative Motifs Behind 'Pyramus and Thisbe'
    Guido Avezzù
  • Reimagining Friar Laurence:
    from Circum-Mediterranean Novellas to the Shakespearan Stage
    Silvia Silvestri
  • Juliet's Nurse and the Italian Balia in the Novella and the Commedia dell'Arte Traditions
    Beatrice Righetti
  • Italian Dance Tradition and Translation in Romeo and Juliet:
    from Narrative Sources to Shakespeare
    Fabio Ciambella
  • Romeo and Juliet in Seventeenth-Century Spain:
    Between Comedy and Tragedy
    Felice Gambin
  • A Mediterranean, Women-Centred Rewriting of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet:
    Roberta Torre's Sud Side Stori
    Maria Elisa Montironi
  • "These violents delights have violent ends":
    Shakespearising the Balkans or Balkanising Shakespeare?
    Petra Bjelica
  • Romeo and Juliet as Mediterranean Political Tragedy, On Stage and Beyond
    Eric Nicholson



August 26, 2022

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