ENG220H1F - L0101

Introduction to Shakespeare


Tuesday 10 am - 12 pm, Thursday 10 am - 11 am

Instructor Information

Dr. Philippa Sheppard

Course Description

More than any other author, Shakespeare’s works have shaped our language and our arts, the way we think and see ourselves. He is performed in every language and culture, been adapted to every medium. This course will explore six of Shakespeare’s plays, arranged chronologically and within genre. With reference to performances caught on film, and founded on historical background, we will discuss the dramatization of theme, character, structure, setting and language. We will endeavour to keep in mind the exigencies of the theatre in Shakespeare’s time and in our own. Shakespeare was, after all, a consummate man of the theatre. His plays are blueprints for shows on stage. We will remain open to the plethora of meanings and interpretations suggested by these blueprints in all their infinite variety.

Required Readings

  • Henry IV Part 1
  • Much Ado About Nothing
  • Twelfth Night
  • Hamlet
  • Othello
  • King Lear

First Three Authors/Texts

  • Henry IV Part 1
  • Much Ado About Nothing
  • Twelfth Night

Methods of Evaluation

  • One in-class essay (20%)
  • One take-home essay (35%)
  • One three-hour exam (35%)
  • Participation (10%)