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William Shakespeare The greatest dramatist in English Literature—indeed, in all the world.

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Presentation on theme: "William Shakespeare The greatest dramatist in English Literature—indeed, in all the world."— Presentation transcript:

1 William Shakespeare The greatest dramatist in English Literature—indeed, in all the world.

2 Shakespeare wrote: Comedies Histories Tragedies

3 Romeo and Juliet Written about 1595 Considered a tragedy West Side Story (Movie) based on R&J

4 The Theater Plays produced for the general public Roofless>open air No artificial lighting Courtyard surrounded by 3 levels of galleries

5 Spectators Wealthy sat in cover benches of “Groundlings”>poorer people stood and watched from the courtyard (“pit”) All but wealthy were uneducated/illiterate Much more interaction than today

6 Staging Areas Stage was aplatform that extended into the pit Dressing & storage rooms in galleries behind & above stage Second-level gallery with upper stage, as used in famous balcony scene in Romeo and Juliet Trap door for ghosts “Heavens” for angelic beings

7 Different from today No scenery Setting was established by references in dialogue Elaborate costumes, nit necessary historical though Plenty of props Fast-paced, colorful (2 hours)

8 Actors Only men and boys Young boys whose voices had not changed play women’s roles Would have been considered indecent for a woman to appear on stage

9 Elizabethan Words An,and: If Anon: Soon Aye: Yes But:Except for E’en:Even E’er: Ever

10 Words (cont.) Haply:Perhaps Happy:Fortunate Hence:Away Hie:Hurry Marry:Indeed

11 Words (cont.) Whence:Where Wilt:Will, will you Withal:In addition to Would:Wish

12 Blank Verse Plays, including Romeo and Juliet, were predominantly in blank verse, unrhymed iambic pentameter (10 syllables a line, accent on every other syllable, no end rhyme.

13 Prose Ordinary writing that is not poetry, drama, or song –Only characters in the lower social classes, such as servants, speak in prose Shakespeare’s plays –Why do you suppose that is?

14 Plot The sequence of events in a literary work

15 Exposition The plot usually begins with this: –introduces>>>> setting characters basic situation

16 Inciting Moment Often called “initial incident” –the first bit of action that occurs which begins the plot –Romeo and Juliet “lock eyes” at the party

17 Conflict The struggle that develops –man vs. man –man vs. himself –man vs. society –man vs. nature

18 Crisis The point where the protagonist’s situation will either get better or worse –protagonist>good guy –antagonist>bad guy

19 Climax The turning point of the story>everything begins to unravel from here –Thus begins the falling action

20 Resolution The end of the central conflict

21 Denouement The final explanation or outcome of the plot –If this is included in literature, it will occur after the resolution.

22 Tragedy: Aristotelian Generally speaking, a drama that has a tragic ending, whereas comedy has a happy ending, often a marriage, after confusion. Aristotle is accredited with five main characteristics of tragedy.

23 Tragedy: Aristotelian 1) Position: the tragic protagonist is a person of “high estate” (such as king, prince, noble) who is happy and esteemed, and whose fall effects the nation, not just himself or his immediate family.

24 Tragedy: Aristotelian 2) Tragic flaw: his error or transgression is a result of a flaw in character which leads to his downfall. Common tragic flaws are pride (hubris), ambition, naivety (gullibility), jealousy, over-trusting, and self will.

25 Tragedy: Aristotelian 3) Reversal: the protagonist’s actions have the opposite effect of what was intended or desired; reversal of fortune; he is partially, but not wholly to blame, for his own demise. The viewer has a sense that the tragic hero’s misfortunes are greater than he deserved.

26 Tragedy: Aristotelian 4) Recognition: (anagnorisis) the revelation of some fact or some person’s identity which brings a “terrible enlightenment” in which he suddenly sees things clearly. tragic hero receives insight which leads to deeper self-understanding or self- awareness (ie. Oedipus and King Lear)

27 Tragedy: Aristotelian 5) Catharsis: (katharsis) the audience experiences pity and fear, a sense of pity for the character and fear that we might be capable of a similar tragic error and fate, and increase in understanding of ourselves and others.

28 Tragedy: Aristotelian 6) Unity: It is an imitation of a single, unified action that is serious, complete, and probable, and has a certain magnitude. More simply, there are three unities: time (one day), place, action (one plot) (Shakespeare followed the unities in A Comedy of Errors, one of his earliest place and not a tragedy, but not other plays)

29 Tragedy: Aristotelian 7) Elevated language

30 Tragedy Shakespearean The central impression of the tragedy is one of waste.

31 Tragedy Shakespearean The tragic world is one of action. Thoughts quickly turn into reality and their actions ultimately lead to their own destruction.

32 Tragedy Shakespearean The ultimate power in the tragic world is moral order, where good and social order dominate The struggle is between good and evil. Evil is the main source of problems and produces death and suffering. Evil disturbs the moral order of the world.

33 Tragedy Shakespearean This evil is eventually destroyed and the moral order of the world is re-established.

34 Tragedy Shakespearean The central impression of the tragedy is one of waste.

35 Tragedy Shakespearean The cycle of a tragedy: Good / Order > Evil > Chaos > Death > Good / Order reestablished

36 Tragedy Shakespearean Reading Shakespeare: Pay attention to first scenes Watch for parallel characters and scenes (last scene brings the play full circle) Be attuned to subtle irony Understand use of images, symbols and motifs Be knowledgeable of common themes

37 Tragedy Shakespearean Reading Shakespeare cont.: Remember that it is poetry, so read sentences not lines; it is drama, so visualize and note who is or is not on stage, especially if a character is alone and thus giving a soliloquy which reveals his thoughts and motives. Keep track of characters Five Acts (Introduction, rising action, climax, falling action, catastrophe (resolution/conclusion)

38 Theme Central idea or insight about life

39 Metaphorical Language Comparison of unlike things > –Paris standing over the “lifeless body” of Juliet, “Sweet flower, with flowers thy bridal bed I strew…” –“Thou detestable maw…Gorged with the dearest morsel of the earth…” Romeo

40 Foil A character whose purpose is to show off another character –Benvolio foil for Tybalt

41 Round characters Characters who have many personality traits, like real people.

42 Flat Characters One-dimensional, embodying only a single trait –Shakespeare often uses them to provide comic relief even in a tragedy

43 Static Characters Characters within a story who remain the same. They do not change. They do not change their minds, opinions or character.

44 Dynamic Character Characters that change somehow during the course of the plot. They generally change for the better.

45 Monologue One person speaking on stage; other character on stage too example-the Prince of Verona commanding the Capulets and Montagues to cease feuding

46 Soliloquy Long speech expressing the thoughts of a character alone on stage. Romeo gives a soliloquy after the servant has fled and Paris has died.

47 Aside A character’s speech not intended to be heard by all characters. The character often turns aside and speaks as to himself or to the audience, and other characters freeze or pantamine.

48 Pun Shakespeare loved to use them!!! –Humorous use of a word with two meanings. –Often used by lower class to mock upper class or by clowns –Sometimes missed by the readers because of Elizabethan double entendre, or sexual innuendo

49 Direct Address Words that tell the reader who is being addressed: “A right fair mark, fair coz, is soonest hit.” “Ah, my mistresses, which of you all/ Will now deny to dance?”

50 Dramatic Irony A contradiction between what a character thinks and what the reader/audience knows to be true

51 Verbal Irony Words used to suggest the opposite of what is meant

52 Situational Irony An event or situation occurs that directly contradicts the expectations of the characters, the reader, or the audience The opposite of what is expected happens

53 Comic Relief Use of comedy within a drama that is NOT comedy to provide “relief” from seriousness or sadness in the plot.


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