Shakespeare in China provides English language readers with a comprehensive sense of China's past and on-going encounter with Shakespeare. It offers a detailed history of twentieth-century Sino-Shakespeare from the beginnings to 1949, followed by more recent accounts of the playwright in the People's Republic, Hong Kong and Taiwan. The study pays particular attention to translation, criticism and theatrical productions and highlights Shakespeare's fate during the turbulent political times of modern China. Chapters on 'Shakespeare and Confucius' and 'The Paradox of Shakespeare in the New China' consider the playwright in the context of 'old' and 'new' Chinese ideologies. Bringing together hard to find materials in both English and Chinese, it builds upon and extends past research on its subject.
"As a survey of Shakespeare in translation and performance in China during the last half of the 20th century, Levith's book serves as a worthy introduction. Shakespeare in China covers the important historical events since 1949 and their effects on circulation of western literary texts and ideas. It has some real value and serves as a model of genuine international scholarship and interdisciplinarity that will benefit scholars and teachers of Shakespeare." - The Shakespeare Yearbook, October 2005
"Murray Levith's study offers a helpful, perceptive overview of Shakespeare's fortunes in China, where he was virtually unknown until the twentieth century." - J.W.M., The Shakespeare Newsletter, Spring/Summer 2007. No. 271
" [Shakespeare in China] offers useful cultural histories of Shakespeare's global effect in Asia...Levith has an excellent concluding chapter in which he argues that 'the paradox of Shakespeare in the New China' consists of a 'schizophrenic love/hate relationship." - Studies in English Literature