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Wall of Berlin Cafe, 2517 Durant (off Telegraph)
12:15 - 1:15 Wednesdays
11:00 - 12:00 Thursdays
Narrative structures: actions, plots; logic of plot-construction.
Characters: whether virtuous or vicious; also place in plot, e.g.: principal characters; exploited characters (used by Shakespeare to make other characters look better or worse); super-characters; extraneous characters; "outsiders" (Don Amando, Shylock, Malvolio, Caliban).
Conclusions or denouements: rewards and punishments; good deaths; justified deaths; do characters end up better or worse than they deserve?
Mechanics of end-results: do things come about by intention? by letting things work themselves out? by coincidence or dumb luck? by natural means? supernatural means?
Gender issues: relative power of men and women; how do women compensate? changing of roles; cross-dressing. If gender is important, is it more important than class?
Language: do characters speak prose? poetry? blank verse? rhymed verse? do they change the kind of language they speak over time? Is there a one-to-one suitability of language to character?
How is language used? to create atmosphere? spells? relationships? curses? storms? love? hate? comedy? wit? national, ethnic, or gender differences?
Physical space: benefits or disadvantages of open-plan stage? daylight? costume? absence of scenery? limited use of curtains?
Themes and topics: moral obligations: loyalty to king? ruler? overseer? living parents? dead parents? extended family? servants? others? Obligation to right wrongs? to fall in love? to beget children? to care for them?
Shakespeare Santa Cruz (begins 23 July)
California Shakespeare Festival
Identify some aspect of Henry IV Part1, Merchant of Venice, Hamlet, or Twelfth Night about which there is doubt or controversy. For example, is Hal self-serving in a Machiavellian fashion, or does he have England's best interests at heart? is Shylock a thorough villain, or a partly sympathetic character?; is Hamlet truly mad, or does he just feign madness?; does Hamlet realize that Polonius and the King are behind the arras, or not? Are we supposed to feel sorry for Malvolio at the end of the play, or rejoice in his discomfiture?
Go through the local scene or through the entire play, first using one assumption, then the other. To what conclusion does each assumption lead?
Conclude by arguing that one of the two assumptions is superior to the other, or that they are evenly balanced.
Remember to keep your thoughts very brief, so that your paper does not exceed the 4-page limit.
Identify a situation in Midsummer Night's Dream or Richard III in which the supernatural intervenes in human action. Analyze the situation to show, first, what happens; second, how Shakespeare sets off the event as supernatural; and third and last, how the supernatural is harmonized (or not) with the natural.
In the course of your paper, analyze at least one speech in depth.
Variations: within the space of four pages, you may (if you wish) discuss more than one play, character, or supernatural event; by the same token, you may analyze more than one speech.
See separate file for instructions on writing and formatting your paper.
English N117S SHAKESPEARE Summer 1998 Mr. Nelson Week 1 Mo Jun 22 Introduction to William Shakespeare: Contexts, Life We 24 A Midsummer Night's Dream Week 2 Mo 29 Richard III We Jul 01 Week 3 Mo 06 Henry IV, Part 1 Mini-exam 1 We 08 Selected Sonnets from 127 to end Week 4 Mo 13 Merchant of Venice Mini-exam 2 We 15 Paper 1 due Week 5 Mo 20 Hamlet Mini-exam 3 We 22 Week 6 Mo 27 Twelfth Night Mini-exam 4 We 29 Selected Sonnets from 1 to 126 Week 7 Mo Aug 03 King Lear Mini-exam 5 We 05 Paper 2 due Week 8 Mo 10 The Tempest We 12 Final exam Notes on class business. 1) We will normally read one play per week. Students are expected to have read each play to the end by the Monday on which that play is first discussed. 2) In lieu of a mid-term examination, which would interfere with the one-play-per-week routine, five mini-exams (15 minutes each) will be administered over successive Mondays (Weeks 3-7). Each mini-exam will consist of one identification section taken from the reading for that day, plus one essay on a topic discussed in previous weeks. Each student must take four and only four mini-exams. No make-up mini-exams except on written medical excuses. 3) Play readings will be organized throughout the term, including both afternoons and evenings. Although this is a voluntary activity, and students are not required to attend, each student is urged to participate in at least one reading. 4) Shakespeare plays are available in the audio-visual facility on the first (lowest) level of Moffit Library. Students are urged to watch plays on VCR, but as a supplment and not as a substitute for reading the texts. 5) Students are expected to attend class regularly. Attendance will be taken regularly. More than one unexcused absence will result in a reduction in the final grade. 6) Students are reminded of the Department of English policy regarding plagiarism (posted on instructor's website).
All written work submitted in this course, except for acknowledged quotations, is to be expressed in your own words. It should also be constructed upon a plan of your devising. Work copied from a book, from another student's paper, or from any other source is not acceptable. The submission of such copied work will, under University rules, render the offending student subject to an F grade for the work in question or for the whole course, and will also make him/her liable for referral to the Director of the Office of Student Activities and Programs for further disciplinary action.
Moderate quotation for illustrative ends is often advantageous. Such passages must be placed within quotation marks or otherwise identified. Moreover, if reliance is placed upon a particular work for ideas, acknowledgment must be made. The instructor will be glad to answer questions as to the proper use of footnotes and citations for identification of sources.
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