A fresh perspective on the history of the United States, and a timely reminder of Shakespeare's indelible influence. James Shapiro illuminates in this revelatory new history that Shakespeare has an essential place in American culture.

Why, though, would a proudly independent republic embrace England's greatest writer? Especially when his works enact so many of America's darkest nightmares: interracial marriage, cross-dressing, same-sex love, tyranny and assassination? Shapiro leads us to fascinating answers and startling stories.

Shakespeare in a Divided America; James Shapiro