Shakespeare for Teachers
Course nameShakespeare for Teachers
Course datesemester 1 (2023 - 2024)
Registration open until
Instructor(s)Sonja Kleij (RU) / t.b.a.
E-mail contactSonja Kleij (RU)
With successful completion of this course, students will:
- have developed a critical intellectual foundation for teaching Shakespeare;
- be able to recognize defining characteristics and concerns of Shakespearean drama;
- be able to analyze and discuss the rich, complex language of Shakespeare’s plays;
- be able to identify and to differentiate amongst theoretical approaches to Shakespeare’s plays;
- be able to situate Shakespeare’s drama in the realities of the early modern playhouse;
- be able to discuss adaptation and performance approaches to Shakespeare’s work;
- have mastered different dramatic techniques to explore Shakespeare’s drama;
- further develop their independent research skills.
Knowledge of, and familiarity with, Shakespeare’s plays and poems remain vital components of understanding English language, literature, and culture. This course deepens and broadens that knowledge and familiarity by closely attending to two of Shakespeare’s plays and a selection of his sonnets, and by bringing contemporary, topical critical lenses to bear on those works. Through close reading, serious engagement with critical theory, and discussions of performance productions and interpretations of the plays, students will hone their skills in critical reading and writing and gain an essential academic grounding for teaching Shakespeare themselves.
We will spend two weeks studying the Sonnets, three weeks on Henry V (this includes a viewing of the play) and two weeks on Romeo and Juliet. We will explore memory and remembrance, as well as performance in relation to Henry V and approach Romeo and Juliet from the perspective of gender studies and adaptation studies.
Course requirements / Language proficiency
A strong command of spoken and written English is essential to succeed in this course.
Seminars and lectures, and independent research. There will be six seminars and lectures of which the first will be in person and the rest will be online. There will also be an in person viewing of the Globe production of Henry V (2012) in week 4.
60% Research essay
5 ECTS = 140 hours, of which:
- Seminars: 7 x 3 = 21 hrs
- Reading and preparatory work per week: 6 x 9 = 56 hrs
- Presentation = 23 hrs
- Research Essay = 40 hrs
UvA/VU 6 ECTS
Uva/VU students who need 6 ECTS may elect to do more homework or an extra assignment. This must be determined with the course teacher(s) in week 1.
Background literature and course materials
- Shakespeare, William. The Complete Sonnets and Poems, ed. Colin Burrow. Oxford World’s Classics. Oxford University Press, 2008.
- Shakespeare, William. Henry V, ed. Gary Taylor. Oxford World’s Classics. Oxford University Press, 2008.
- Shakespeare, William. Romeo and Juliet, ed. Jill. L. Levenson. Oxford World’s Classics. Oxford University Press, 2008.
- Gong, Chloe. These Violent Delights. Hodder, 2020.
Total costs: 50€.
10/11/2023, 14h30-17h00 on campus Radboud in Nijmegen: E 2.68
(Note: only this first class starts at 14:30, for students who also take the other Masterlanguage course Language Variation and Change on campus in Utrecht)
17/11/2023, 14h00-17h00 (online)
24/11/2023, 14h00-17h00 (online)
01/12/2023, 14h00-17h00 on campus Radboud in Nijmegen: E 2.06
08/12/2023, 14h00-17h00 (online)
15/12/2023, 14h00-17h00 (online)
22/12/2023, 14h00-17h00 (online)