QUINTESSENCE OF DUST

The Hidden Meaning of Hamlet
by Kenneth Chan
209 pages; iUniverse, 2004; 6 in. 9 in.
Prose; ISBN: 0-595-31337-X
The still-controversial question most asked by Shakespearean scholars, who have argued it for at least four centuries, is whether Sir Francis Bacon, a Rosicrucian, wrote all or parts of the plays penned under the byline of William Shakespeare. Perhaps the next most-controversial question surrounding the Bard's work is: What is the hidden meaning of Hamlet--if there is one? A general consensus among contemporary academicians had been: no mystery-school type meaning was written into the tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark. Then came an unknown literary upstart from Singapore who turned academia's theory upside down. In his book that won Honorable Mention in the 2005 Foreword Magazine Best Book Awards, Kenneth Chan parses Shakespeare's poetic sentences with the precision of a surgeon performing bloodless cosmetic surgery. In lieu of a literary scalpel, Chan uses Laertes' sword and other literary devices to give Hamlet a fantastic facelift. Chan is well-qualified. Not only has he been a student of mysticism for years, he holds a degree as a doctor of medicine. Chan suggests his readers simply enjoy Shakespeare's play "as is" but they give serious consideration to the points he makes in his own book, one of which is that Hamlet has an initiatic quality and that the long time Hamlet spends battling with his conscience, before choosing revenge as the path to follow, was deliberately crafted and is, therefore, deeply meaningful. Chan sheds new light on the world's best-known soliloquy: To be or not to be? That was the question; with Chan's expository revelations, it is now the answer. Mystified by the real message in Hamlet, regardless of who might actually have written it in full context or in part? Read the book!

Price: $18.95 (plus shipping & handling)
CONTACT: Kenneth Chan by E-mail
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