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You are here: Home Courses Middlebury-CMRS Course List ENAM 0830 Shakespeare I: Shakespeare in the 1590s - only offered Autumn 2018 & Autumn 2019

ENAM 0830 Shakespeare I: Shakespeare in the 1590s - only offered Autumn 2018 & Autumn 2019

[Please note: This seminar is offered for the Autumn 2018 and 2019 semesters. It is not offered in Spring 2019 or 2020. Each seminar runs only if there is sufficient student demand.] Shakespeare came up to London from the country, where he had already been associated with household players, just after 1590. He entered a lively world of public performance, already marked by such major dramatic presences as Tom Kyd and Christopher Marlowe. In this, the first half of his career, he showed a readiness to turn his hand to anything. The seminar explores the variousness of this output, both comic and tragic. It also investigates Shakespeare’s enormous contribution to one craze of the 1590s, the English history play, and concludes (as it began) with Shakespeare’s contemplation of Roman history. 

  1. Introducing Shakespeare.
  2. Titus Andronicus.
  3. Henry VI, Part Two.
  4. Love's Labours Lost
  5. Romeo and Juliet.
  6. A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
  7. Much Ado About Nothing.
  8. Henry IV, Part One.
  9. Henry V.
  10. Julius Caesar.

Key Reading:

  • The Cambridge Companions series has several volumes on Shakespearian subjects, especially M. De Grazia and S. Wells (eds), The New Cambridge Companion to Shakespeare (2010) (although the first edition, published as S. Wells (ed), The Cambridge Companion to Shakespeare Studies (1986) has at least two still useful seminal essays, by W. R. Elton and Peter Thomson).
  • E. Smith, Shakespeare’s Comedies: A Guide to Criticism (2003); Shakespeare's Histories: A Guide to Criticism (2003); and Shakespeare's Tragedies: A Guide to Criticism (2003)
  • The Blackwell Companions to Literature and Culture series also has a number of volumes on Shakespeare, centrally R. Dutton and J.E. Howard (eds), Companion to Shakespeare’s Works (4 vols, 2004)
  • E. Smith, The Cambridge Introduction to Shakespeare (2007)
  • S. Greenblatt, Renaissance Self-Fashioning: from More to Shakespeare (1980).
  • S. Greenblatt, Shakespearean Negotiations: The Circulation of Social Energy in Renaissance England (1988)
  • J. Dollimore, Radical Tragedy (1984)
  • A. Patterson, Shakespeare and the Popular Voice (1989)
  • T. Stern, Making Shakespeare: From Stage to Page (2004)
The City of Dreaming Spires
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Veronica Popp, Spring Semester 2009, Elmhurst College