How do modern students approach Shakespeare's plays as texts to be performed in the early modern theater? This course begins with the premise that Shakespeare's dramas, while composing an impressive body of literature, are first and foremost play scripts for actors who performed 400 years ago. As such, they require their own set of reading skills. Through regular writing assignments, class discussions, and acting workshops, students practice the skills required to understand the words on the page as clues to their embodiment on the early modern stage. The course surveys plays across Shakespeare's theatrical career-comedies, histories, tragedies, and romances. Critical reading includes both literary criticism and theatrical history.
Satisfies the Literary Studies, Creative Writing, and Rhetoric distribution requirement.
First-year students require permission of the instructor.