ENGL 657 (01) - Shakespeare


Durham   Liberal Arts :: English
Credits: 4.0
Term: Spring 2023 - Full Term (01/24/2023 - 05/08/2023)
Grade Mode: Letter Grading
Class Size:   30  
CRN: 52917
An introduction to the main periods of Shakespeare's playwriting career, addressing representative works from each of the genres in which he wrote (tragedy, comedy, history, romance). We will discuss such matters as a Renaissance theater architecture and performance conventions, Shakespeare's poetic language, the representation of women, commoners and minorities on stage, royal power and court politics, love, sex, religion, and revenge. Live and filmed performances will be included as available. Prereq: ENGL 401.
Registration Approval Required. Contact Instructor or Academic Department for permission then register through Webcat.
Equivalent(s): ENGL 657H
Attributes: Writing Intensive Course
Instructors: Douglas Lanier

Times & Locations

Start Date End Date Days Time Location
1/24/2023 5/8/2023 TR 11:10am - 12:30pm HS G34
Additional Course Details: 

Shakespeare, so the old saw goes, wrote for the stage, not the page. Accordingly this introductory class will introduce you to a selection of Shakespeare's plays viewed as scripts for theatrical performance, from the perspective of both stage conventions in Shakespeare's own day and the performance techniques of our own time. We will learn by thinking about how we might turn the texts into viable stage performances. Along the way we'll have occasion to discuss Shakespeare's abiding interest in gender roles and sexuality, the treatment of outsiders and social stigma, the conduct and complexity of political power, quandaries of ethics and religion, and the nature of theater and playing themselves. Plays for the class may include The Taming of the Shrew, I Henry IV, Henry V, The Merchant of Venice, Much Ado about Nothing, Julius Caesar, King Lear, and The Winter's Tale. This course is especially ideal for theater majors or minors, or English teaching majors, though all who are interested in Shakespeare and the theater are welcome. Requirements include reading quizzes, lots of group work, two essays, a performance project, and a final exam. 

In Spring 2023 this course satisfies a Pre-1800 Literature requirement for English Department majors. 

This course is required for all English Teaching majors.