Joan Pong Linton

1:00p-2:15p TR (40 students) 3 cr. A&H.

In the four centuries since Shakespeare's plays first saw the stage, they have been reproduced in a variety of forms: in print, picture, film, and theater. Different periods and cultures have reinterpreted Shakespearean themes and plots for their own uses. How and why do his plays continue to appeal to such diverse audiences? Do readers and audiences today find the same elements of Shakespeare's plays entertaining and/or relevant as those who read or saw the plays in 1600? In this course, we will respond to these questions by studying ten of his plays from the following list: A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Taming of the Shrew, Twelfth Night, Much Ado About Nothing, The Merchant of Venice, Measure for Measure, Part one of Henry IV, Henry V, Titus Andronicus, Hamlet, Othello, King Lear, The Tempest.

In addition to mini-lectures and class discussions, we will develop individual and collective "readings" of the plays through in-class performances, and collaborative learning activities. The objective is both to practice and develop interpretive skills and to enjoy Shakespeare's plays. Written work will include several 1-page writings, a 4-5 page essay, and a final exam.