Shakespeare and Impure Aesthetics explores ideas about art implicit in Shakespeare’s plays and defines specific Shakespearean aesthetic practices in his use of desire, death and mourning as resources for art. Hugh Grady draws on a tradition of aesthetic theorists who understand art as always formed in a specific historical moment but as also distanced from its context through its form and Utopian projections.
1. Introduction: impure aesthetics;
Part I. A Shakespearean Aesthetic: Into the Woods Outside Athens:
2. A Midsummer Night's Dream: Eros and the aesthetic;
3. Modernity, usury, and art in Timon of Athens;
Part II. The Aesthetics of Death and Mourning:
4. Hamlet as mourning-play: the aesthetics of the Trauerspiel; Hamlet as Trauerspiel; Post-script: Hamlet, subjectivity, and aesthetics;
5. Beautiful death in Romeo and Juliet;
Conclusion: the critical present, 2008.