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The Earl of Southampton Shakespeare “If we may wish to know the force of human genius, we should read Shakespeare. If we wish to see the insignificance.

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Presentation on theme: "The Earl of Southampton Shakespeare “If we may wish to know the force of human genius, we should read Shakespeare. If we wish to see the insignificance."— Presentation transcript:


2 The Earl of Southampton

3 Shakespeare “If we may wish to know the force of human genius, we should read Shakespeare. If we wish to see the insignificance of human learning, study his commentators.” William Hazlitt

4 Finish the Shakespearean Quote: To be or not to be: that is the question (Hamlet). All the world’s a stage, and we are merely its players (Hamlet) This above all: to thine own self, be true (Hamlet). The course of true love never did run smooth (R & J ). Friends, Roman, Countrymen, lend me Your Ears (Julius Caesar ). Et tu, Brute? (Julius Caesar) How well dost thou know my words?

5 Did You Know… Shakespeare is credited by the Oxford English Dictionary for contributing over 3,000 words to the English lexicon He wrote over 38 plays, & 154 sonnets Shakespearean Word Bank C hampion, majestic, lower, blushing, arouse, bedroom, advertising, buzzer, flawed, cold-blooded, luggage, moonbeam, negotiate, impartial, skim milk, tranquil, obscene, zany, worthless, hint, swagger, torture, gossip, varied, unreal, and on and on!

6 The 5 Facts about William Shakespeare #1 He was born in 1564 (we assume April 23) #2 He married Anne Hathaway #3 They had three children ( one, Hamnet, a son who died at age 11) #4 His name appeared in print in a literary review in which he was harshly critiqued by a theater colleague & we have 6 of his own signatures. #5 He died in 1616 at the age of 52 (52 exactly, he died on his birthday)

7 Three types of plays Comedies – Midsummer’s Night Dream – Love Labours Lost – (In an ironic twist, Love Labours Found is one of his 3 lost plays) Histories – Henry IV part I and part II – Henry V Tragedies – Macbeth – Romeo & Juliet

8 The Globe Theater An Aerial View Modern Replica of Interior

9 Flag Signified the start of the play Trap Door A Release for ghosts & dead bodies Price for a ticket? 1 cent Only ones allowed to wear purple Queen sat behind stage

10 So why would anyone oppose the theater? Distracted many from work; plays lasted 2 and ½ hours with no intermission! Spread disease; shut down for a year due to plague Attracted pick-pockets & prostitutes Controversial content challenged conservative religious & political officials

11 The Tragedy of Macbeth: Introduction As The Tragedy of Macbeth opens, the Scottish army is battling invading forces Scotland and King Duncan wants a victory. Norwegian forces

12 The Tragedy of Macbeth: Introduction Macbeth fights ferociously King Duncan is impressed. killing the traitor Macdonwald and planting Macdonwald’s head on the castle battlements.

13 The Tragedy of Macbeth: Introduction While crossing the stormy countryside after the battle, Macbeth and Banquo encounter a trio of witches. Double, double, toil and trouble, Fire burn and cauldron bubble

14 The Tragedy of Macbeth: Introduction The weird sisters make these predictions: Then, the witches vanish, and a messenger appears to tell Macbeth that King Duncan has just given him a noble title. Macbeth will earn noble titles. Banquo will produce a line of kings. Macbeth will be King of Scotland.

15 The Tragedy of Macbeth: Introduction All Macbeth can think about is the sisters’ final prophecy … And the thought that he might become king.

16 The Tragedy of Macbeth: Introduction His wife, the ambitious Lady Macbeth longs for She’ll do anything to make her husband king. power high position wealth prestige

17 The Tragedy of Macbeth: Introduction She just may get her chance. King Duncan decides to visit Macbeth’s castle. Will the king live to rule another day?

18 But…theater was still preferable to other forms of “entertainment” in their times: Witch Burnings Public Executions Bear Baiting

19 AND, it was supported by one of the most important cultural & political figures of the 16 th Century: Queen Elizabeth Daughter of Henry VIII Wise, Stern, Ruled for 40Years Used single status to England’s advantage in foreign policy w/ the “promise to marry,” but never did. She loved the Theater When the Queen laughed, the Crowd Laughed. Her approval for Theater = Protection for Shakespeare & Co.

20 Despite the Queen’s support, the theater faced many challenges Actors paid low wages (esp. those not under Queen’s protection) Sometimes performed a play a week Little $ = Little Scenery High property taxes shut down the Globe Theater The actors then resiliently dismantled theater piece by piece & reconstructed it on land with cheaper taxes (Across the Thames River )

21 …but the challenges didn’t end with low wages & high taxes Women were not allowed to act So yes, men dressed as women. Women were also not allowed to: – Vote – Have a career – Choose their husbands – Remember the witch burnings still going on?

22 Theater as Precursor to Modern Cinema? Elizabethan Theater vs 1 Cent for a “ground floor ticket” Townspeople “escaped” to the theater Actors troupes traveled to promote audiences Acting was a lowly profession, slowly gaining credibility Big names attracted audiences from nearby towns Today’s Cinema $100 Main Floor theater, or $10 at the Cinema Box Office tickets sell out every weekend “Entertainment Tonight” promotes upcoming films We pity today’s unsuccessful actors, yet worship the Hollywood stars “Starring George Clooney…” Richard Burbage

23 Unit Objectives To Build Our Skills for Reading Shakespeare by: Understanding the era Understanding the Language Understanding how the genre of “the play” differs from standard fiction

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