Shakespeare and Europe: History – Performance – Memory
Shakespeare has been performed on European stages for over 400 years. English strolling players began coming to the Continent in the 1590s and brought with them Shakespeare´s dramas in abbreviated and adulterated forms. Since then Shakespeare´s plays in Europe have served as models for indigenous national theater traditions and as public forums for political subversion. With the growing need for a pan-European cultural consensus since 1990, Shakespeare´s dramas have functioned as spaces for staging the transformation of Europe. As such the history of Shakespeare performance on the European stage is simultaneously an ongoing history, a grand narrative, of the European cultural memory.