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Building Background Knowledge The Life and Times of William Shakespeare.

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Presentation on theme: "Building Background Knowledge The Life and Times of William Shakespeare."— Presentation transcript:

1 Building Background Knowledge The Life and Times of William Shakespeare

2 Today’s Goals: PWBAT appreciate how WS’s life and times impacted his writing PWBAT be aware of the controversy surrounding WS’s identity... but will read the play for itself PWBAT begin Macbeth successfully with appropriate background knowledge PWBAT decode a Shakespearean soliloquy and translate it into current English PWBAT identify current allusions to Shakespeare in our culture

3 William Shakespeare Stratford upon Avon Playwright/Actor

4 Family Life Married to Anne Hathaway Three children: one daughter, Susana, and two twins, Hamnet and Judith Lived in London, away from his family, where the Rose and Globe theaters and royal court were

5 Shakespeare’s Time: Just for Fun Bair Baiting Landscaped Mazes Jousting Executions & Torture -Burnings (women) -Beheadings -’The Rack’ -Hanging -Drawing & Quartering (Hang, cut down, tie down, cut off penis and testicles, slit open stomach, burn intestines and heart, quarter body) The Theater

6 Of His 11 Theaters, 1 Stands Out The Globe Could seat 3,000 Open air theater Trap doors 1,200 square foot stage Three stories of seats with both boxes an ‘penny seats’

7 His Times – Henry V III Married his big brother’s widow, Catherine of Aragon -stillborn daughter -son died at 52 days -Mary born 1516 Feared no sons, so sought divorce from Rome. Denied. Created his own new church: The Church of England

8 His Times – Henry V III Wed his mistress, Anne Boleyn Had one daughter, Elizabeth I Then 3-6 miscarriages Henry declared marriage ‘cursed by God’... had Anne beheaded for ‘treason, incest, adultery & witchcraft

9 His Times – Henry V III Wed his mistress Jane Seymour (lady in waiting to both KA and AB) Birth to boy, Edward VI Died 12 days afterward from puerperal fever After death, Henry wore black and did not marry for two years

10 His Times – Henry V III Married Anne of Cleves of Germany Persuaded to marry her because of her flattering painting Marriage failed, annulment granted, healthy cash settlement for Anne

11 His Times – Henry V III Married Catherine Howard... a Catholic Henry 45 and obese Catherine 15 and beautiful Catherine had an affair with Thomas Culpeper and was executed for treason

12 His Times – Henry V III Married Catherine Parr Lutheran Cared for Henry while he was dying Helped him reconcile with Mary and Elizabeth (daughters to Catherine Aragon and Anne Boleyn) Managed to survive him

13 A Rhyme for Henry V III

14 His Times – Henry V III Elizabeth’s Reign Was the End of Tudor Dynasty

15 His Times Elizabethan ( ) Queen Elizabeth I ‘Virgin Queen’ Cosmology for crowning ‘Golden Age’ for literature & art Last heir of Henry VIII Died 1601 Succeeded by James VI which united Scotland and England New movie about her reign!!

16 His Times Jacobean ( ) King James VI only Scotland’s King after his mother’s (Mary of Scotts) execution... until added England/Ireland Fascinated by witchcraft Personal patron of Shakespeare’s company aka: English Renaissance aka: Early Modern

17 The Great Plague Devastating large geographic areas throughout history Began wreaking havoc in Europe in the 1300s Called ‘The Black Death’ and ‘The Bubonic Plague’

18 The Great Plague of London Killed more than 75,000 of only 46,000 people in 1664 – that’s 1 of 5... at rate of 7,000/day England may have lost as much as 70% of its population Started at port cities and worked its way to the interior of Europe

19 Symptoms of the Great Plague Swelling of armpits, groin, and neck that would pus and bleed Skin covered in ‘dark blotches’ Fever Nausea/vomiting Blood tinged mucus and hemorrhaging (Ebola) Death 4-8 days

20 Symptoms of the Great Plague Lord Mayor required the killing of over 120,000 cats and dogs in desperation People burned incense, smoked tobacco, and kept flowers by them to prevent contracting it <>

21 Causes of the Great Plague Infected fleas transmitted bacteria from rats to people Not airborne Outbreaks increased in the summer months but nearly stopped in the winter Outbreaks weren’t seen after The Great Fire

22 The Plague Today? The Plague and AIDS protection today in descendents of plague survivors (called ‘inherited immunity)

23 Question: How do you imagine The Great Plague affected Shakespeare?

24 The Works The Plays Histories Richard II and III, Henry VIII, Edward III, Tragedies King Lear, Othello, Hamlet, Macbeth, Romeo & Juliet Comedies As You Like It, Midsummer Night’s Dream, Taming of the Shrew, The Tempest, Much Ado about Nothing The Sonnets

25 Shakespeare Today

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27 Shakespeare’s Language Middle English Special vocabulary, spellings, and flow Sometimes vulgar Sexual innuendo Takes a bit of practice to get used to... and a relaxed approach! Plenty of supplements

28 Practice Shakespeare’s Language Read the famous soliloquy from Julius Caesar For 15 minutes, with a partner, try to put the soliloquy into current language (remember to relax & resource!) Watch video clip to check our work

29 Soliloquy Practice: Why, man, he doth bestride the narrow world Like a Colossus; and we petty men Walk under his huge legs, and peep about To find ourselves dishonourable graves. Men at some time are masters of their fates: The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, But in ourselves, that we are underlings. ( )

30 Sonnet #29 Practice: When in disgrace with fortune and men's eyes, I all alone beweep my outcast state, And trouble deaf Heaven with my bootless cries, And look upon myself, and curse my fate, Wishing me like to one more rich in hope, Featur'd like him, like him with friends possess'd, Desiring this man's art, and that man's scope, With what I most enjoy contented least: Yet in these thoughts myself almost despising, Haply I think on thee,--and then my state (Like to the lark at break of day arising From sullen earth) sings hymns at heaven's gate; For thy sweet love remember'd such wealth brings That then I scorn to change my state with kings'.

31 Who WAS Shakespeare? Theories: Francis Bacon 32 pieces of evidence Queen Elizabeth I Christopher Marlowe 37 pieces of evidence topher-marlow.htm mphlet/pamphlet.htm

32 Macbeth Introduction Macbeth takes place in Scotland Loosely based on a real, historical figure, King Macbeth Written after James VI becomes his patron Divine right = God to king Primogeniture system: eldest son inherits the throne Mirrors thwarted Gunpowder Plot assassination attempt in 1605 James VI into the supernatural

33 Macbeth Introduction One of the shortest of Shakespeare’s tragedies Only five acts total Introduces us to a ‘tragic hero’ Holds many themes about human nature, ambition, evil, gender, relationships, and kingship

34 Macbeth Introduction Glamis Castle in Scotland often visited by James VI Haunted to this day The widow ‘Grey Lady’, was imprisoned by her brother and burned as a witch (chapel) ‘Secret Room’ for monster of Glamis

35 Macbeth Introduction Witchcraft Crime punishable by death Source of intense interest for James VI Elizabeth into cosmology (astrology)

36 Macbeth Introduction Let’s Begin! Read aloud together Side by side translation (thank you, Barron’s!) Occasionally, I will remove the translation so we can practice our skills Have fun & take risks!

37 Today’s Goals: PWBAT appreciate how WS’s life and times impacted his writing PWBAT be aware of the controversy surrounding WS’s identity... but will read the play for itself PWBAT begin Macbeth successfully with appropriate background knowledge PWBAT decode a Shakespearean soliloquy and translate it into current English PWBAT identify current allusions to Shakespeare in our culture


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