This work focuses on both the texts of Shakespeare's plays, and the many contexts in which they have been produced, from their first performances to contemporary reproductions. This book introduces nine of Shakespeare's major plays: "A Midsummer Night's Dream", "Richard II", "Macbeth", "Antony and Cleopatra", "Hamlet", "Twelfth Night", "Measure for Measure", "King Lear", and "The Tempest". In addition, there are two shorter intervals, one describing the original theatrical contexts for the plays, and the other discussing the different textual versions of the plays available to us. The chapters focus on the critical practices of close reading, historical contextualisation and a question and answer teaching style. There is also detailed attention to Shakespeare on stage, on film and in the new communications technologies and new theoretical approaches to Shakespeare's plays.