Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, James Shapiro received his B.A. from Columbia University (1977) before receiving his Ph.D from the University of Chicago (1982). Shapiro is a Professor of English at Columbia University, New York. He reviews regularly in The New York Times Book Review, was a visiting scholar at the New Globe Theatre and has lectured on Shakespeare and his times all over the world. He is the author of Rival Playwrights, Shakespeare and the Jews, and Oberammergau: The Troubling Story of the World’s Most Famous Passion Play. He is married, has an eight-year-old son, and divides his time between New York City and Thetford, Vermont.