Tutor: David Wootton
Module type: Period Topic
Module code: HIS00022C
Students taking this module will read (or listen to, or watch) more than a dozen plays by Shakespeare and his contemporaries. The plays will be used as a mirror in which to see the beliefs and values of the audience for which they were written.
Key themes that will be explored include politics, religion, marriage, and honour. These were subjects on which there was a good deal of disagreement amongst Shakespeare’s contemporaries, so that plays had to be open to a number of different, contrasting interpretations depending on the convictions of individual members of the audience. Students will be encouraged to find several different possible meanings within each text.
This course will provide for students a novel approach to literary texts as an historical source as well as building on the skills which some of them may have acquired through sixth form study of English or modern languages.
The provisional outline for the module is as follows:
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