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Romeo and Juliet is one of Shakespeare's most popular tragedies and has provoked a rich diversity of interpretations. Definitively passionate, it is much more than the archetypal love story: the play tests the limits of tragedy and comedy, challenges gender roles and explores the nature of language. In this Reader's Guide, Gillian Woods: * surveys key critical responses to Romeo and Juliet, from the sixteenth century to the twenty-first century * plots a clear route through the vast array of debates, identifying chronological and thematic connections and explaining contexts * investigates major issues and approaches such as deconstruction, psychoanalytical criticism, feminism and queer theory * discusses film adaptations, including Baz Luhrmann's 1996 box-office hit William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet. Authoritative and accessible, this invaluable Guide provides students, teachers and researchers with a panorama of the play's critical history in all its dynamic variety.