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The resonance that Jacques Derrida's theory of deconstruction had in the field of Shakespearean criticism beginning with the late seventies was just as dramatic as the playwright's literary works. With a revolutionary promise to liberate interpretation from the reigns of logocentrism and of the authorial figure, deconstruction created the premises of unbound readings resistant to fixed signification. The early nineties, however, signaled a radical shift towards a humanist perspective which determined Shakespeare's central position Western literary canon. The author reviews the development of these two critical directions and offers a parallel reading of Shakespeare's plays in order to advance the view that the history of Shakespearean criticism is an essentially human experience which, in its turn, encompasses critical and theoretical endeavors.