William Shakespeare made his name as a poet before he became famous as a playwright. His erotic poem Venus and Adonis was the most popular work of literature of the Elizabethan Age, while its dark companion piece The Rape of Lucrece set the mould for Shakespeare’s exploration of the tragic consequences of sexual desire turning to violence.
Jonathan Bate will show how Shakespeare developed these themes from his reading of the great Roman poet Ovid.
Professor Bate was Gresham Professor of Rhetoric from 2017-19. He is a British academic, biographer, critic, broadcaster, novelist and scholar. He specialises in Shakespeare, Romanticism and Ecocriticism. He is Professor of English Literature at the University of Oxford, Provost of Worcester College, Oxford, and Honorary Fellow of Creativity at Warwick Business School.