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: Shakespeare's career-long fascination with the Mediterranean made the association a natural one for this first World Shakespeare Congress of the Third Millennium. The plenary lectures and selected papers in this volume represent some of the best contemporary thought and writing on Shakespeare, in the ranging plenary lectures by Jonathan Bate on Shakespeare's islands and the Muslim connection, Michael Coveney's on the late Sir John Gielgud, Robert Ellrodt's on Shakespeare's sonnets and Montaigne's essays, Stephen Orgel's on Shakespeare's own Shylock, and Marina Warner's on Shakespeare's fairy-tale uses of magic. Also included in the volume's several sections are original pagers selected from special sessions and seminars by other distinguished writers, including Jean E. Howard, Gary Taylor, and Richard Wilson. Tom Clayton is Regents' Professor of English Language and Literature and chair of the Classical Civilization Program at the University of Minnesota. Susan Brock is Head of Library and Information Resources at the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust in Stratford-upon-Avon and Honorary Fellow of the Shakespeare Institute of the University of Birmingham. Vicente Fores is Associate Professor of English at the University of Valencia.