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Presentation on theme: "A GUIDE TO HISTORIES, COMEDIES, AND TRAGEDIES."— Presentation transcript:


2 Shakespeare’s Works To date, William Shakespeare is the most prolific writer, ever. Shakespeare’s works have been translated into every living language. His plays live on and are continuously performed throughout the world.

3 Comedies, Histories, and Tragedies
Shakespeare’s plays are grouped into three categories: Comedies Histories Tragedies

4 The Shakespearean Comedies
The term “Comedy” had a different meaning in Shakespeare’s time. Typical Shakespearean comedies included happy endings, frequent puns, or intertwining plotlines. In general, Shakespeare’s comedies are more light-hearted. Examples: All’s Well that Ends Well, As You Like It, The Comedy of Errors, Love Labour’s Lost, A Midnight Summer’s Dream, and Much Ado about Nothing

5 Concepts of Comedy An important part of Shakespeare’s plays would be Apollonian vs. Dionysian. Apollo and Dionysus were both sons of Zues. Apollo was the god of the sun, lightness, music, and poetry. Conversely, Dionysus was the god of wine, ecstasy, and intoxication. But what does this mean to Shakespeare?

6 Apollonian vs. Dionysian
In Shakespeare’s plays, “Apollo” represented the “good” character, whereas “Dionysus” represented the “bad” character. What this means is that Shakespeare clearly establishes the bad characters from the good characters. Most of Shakespeare’s Comedies feature a good guy and a bad guy, so this means that Apollonian and Dionysian appear in all of Shakespeare’s comedies.

7 Shakespearean History
Shakespeare’s histories were normally chronicles of past Kings’ lives. His histories were not as prolific as his comedies or tragedies.

8 Politics of Shakespeare
Often, Shakespeare’s histories were influenced by politics. Shakespeare lived in an era ruled by the monarch Elizabeth I, the last queen in the house of Tudor. As such, his histories often depicts the older generations of the house of Tudor as heroes and saints. Oppositely, he depicts the Richard III, who was the last monarch in the rival house of York, as an evil tyrant.

9 Tragedies Shakespeare’s Tragedies all follow the same basic format:
Five acts, with the first two acts going smoothly, the third as the turning point, and the fourth and fifth acts contain the falling action. The main protagonists have admirable but flawed personalities. For example, Romeo is an admirable character with good intentions, but he is a “fool for love,” and thus flawed. The tragic endings are usually caused by nothing in the protagonists’ control.

10 Famous Tragedies Shakespeare’s most famous tragedies were written in a time between 1601 and 1609. Othello, Mcbeth, Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet, and King Lear are his most famous.

11 Love Tragedies Three of his tragedies are considered “love tragedies.”
Othello, in which the Moor of Venice is conned into believing that his friend is cheating on his newly wedded wife. In the end, they both die. In Romeo and Juliet, probably the most famous of all of his works, a young man, Romeo, falls in love with a woman of a rival family. In the end, they commit suicide. Antony and Cleopatra details the relationship of the two from the start of a war until the tragic death of Cleopatra.

12 Romeo and Juliet Romeo and Juliet is possibly his most famous play.
The story features two rival families, the Montagues and Capulets. Romeo is a Montague, while Juliet a Capulet. Early in the play, Romeo sneaks into a Capulet ball, where he meets Juliet, and later marries her.

13 In this scene… Tybalt, (played by Christian Ferko) a Capulet, discovers that Romeo (River Merz) snuck into the Capulet ball, so he challenges him to a duel. Romeo, having married Juliet, views Tybalt as family. He refuses the fight. Mercutio, (played by Arrista Voorhees) is angered at Tybalt, and angered at Romeo for his “vile submission.” He accepts the duel for him. Benvolio, (played by Christian Hauze, off screen) attempts to convince Mercutio to stop, since they are in public. Mercutio, however, ignored him…

14 Bibliography All pictures courtesy of
Video was made by Christian Ferko Information on all his works found at Word for word texts of all his works: Comedy Flowchart:


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