This is a masters-level Shakespeare course. Students who take it should have
had at least one undergraduate class in Shakespeare or be familiar with Shakespeare's
plays from theater performances, film, or video. The class is in part a graduate
survey, in which we look at a broad range of topics and a variety of plays.
Thus, we will sample from all of the genres: comedy, history, tragedy, and
romance. It seems to me that it is useful to mix familiar plays like Hamlet
with those that are less frequently taught, as with Titus Andronicus and
Pericles Prince of Tyre -- especially in a graduate class. There will be
some work with theoretical approaches to understanding the plays, and we
will read four articles with theoretical importance along the way: one on
feminism, one that is New Historicist, one on authorship, and one on the
New Bibliography. The main thrust of the course, however, will be to help
students to understand and develop a feel for Shakespeare's plays as literature.
We also will spend a good deal of time dealing with video performances and
some time with considerations of pedagogy.