Shakespeare and the Jews

James Shapiro, Shakespeare and the Jews (New York: Columbia University Press, 1996)

Summary from the Publisher:

Going against the grain of the dominant scholarship on the period, which generally ignores the impact of Jewish questions in early modern England, James Shapiro presents how Elizabethans imagined Jews to be utterly different from themselves—-in religion, race, nationality, and even sexuality. From strange cases of Christians masquerading as Jews to bizarre proposals to settle foreign Jews in Ireland, this book looks into the crisis of cultural identity in Elizabethan England and sheds new light onĀ The Merchant of Venice.

Table of Contents:

False Jews and Counterfeit Christians
Myths, Histories, Consequences
The Jewish Crime
The Pound of Flesh
The Hebrew Will Turn Christian
Race Nation or Alien?
Shakespeare and the Jew Bill of 1753

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