Shakespearean Contexts (F12)

SCHOOL OF ENGLISH AND THEATRE STUDIES
COLLEGE OF ARTS
UNIVERSITY OF GUELPH

ENGL 3020: Shakespearean Contexts

 

MacN 149
MWF 12:30-13:20

Andrew Bretz
Office Location: McKN 423
Office Phone Number: 56873
Office Hours: W: 13:30-14:30
Skype Office Hours: TBA
bretza@uoguelph.ca
Twitter: @AndrewBretz001

Texts:

Marlowe, Christopher. Edward II. Eds. Martin Wiggins, Robert Lindsay. London: Methuen Drama, 2003.  ISBN 0713666692.

Fletcher, John. The Tamer Tamed, or, The Woman’s Prize.  Ed. Lucy Munro.  London: Methuen Drama, 2010.  ISBN: 9780713688757

Kyd, Thomas. The Spanish Tragedy. Ed. Andrew Gurr. London: Methuen Drama, 2009. ISBN: 1408114216

Middleton, Thomas and William Rowley. The Changeling. Ed. Michael Neill. London: Methuen Drama, 2007.  ISBN: 0713668849

Shakespeare, William. Taming of the Shrew.  Ed. Barbara Hodgdon.  London: Methuen Drama, 2010. ISBN: 9781903436936

–. Hamlet.  Ed. Neil Taylor and Ann Thompson.  London: Methuen Drama, 2006.  ISBN: 1904271332

–.  Richard II.  Ed. Charles R. Forker.  London: Methuen Drama, 2002.  ISBN: 1903436338

 

Course Pack includes:

Fletcher, John.  BonducaThe Dramatic Works in the Beaumont and Fletcher Canon. Gen. Ed. Fredson Bowers. Vol. IV.  Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1979. 149-259.

Heywood, Thomas. Rape of Lucrece. Ed. Allan Holaday.  Urbana, IL: U of Illinois P, 1950.

Shakespeare, William. The Rape of Lucrece. Ed. J. W. Lever. Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 1971.

Recommended Texts:

MLA Handbook. (7th Edition)

Crystal, David and Ben.  Shakespeare’s Words: A Glossary and Language Companion.  London: Penguin, 2002.

Adamson, Sylvia, et al. eds.  Reading Shakespeare’s Dramatic Language: A Guide.  London: Thomson Learning, 2001 (2007).

Undergraduate Calendar Description:

A study of a selection of Shakespeare’s plays and poems in conjunction with a wide range of other texts. These may include, at the instructor’s choice, ‘source’ narratives, subsequent adaptations, and plays and poems by predecessors or contemporaries, as well as other writings that shed light upon discursive contexts, performance practices, authorial and playhouse revision, issues of gender and subjectivity, and the reception of these plays by early modern audiences and readers. Reading-intensive course. (Offered in even-numbered years.)

Objectives:

This is a reading intensive course.

By the end of this course, students will be able to:

  1. Correctly deploy the terminology of dramatic analysis in reference to early modern drama (e.g. correctly defining “revenge tragedy”)
    1. This will be tested in the exams and through participation
  2. Situate certain early modern playwrights against Shakespeare and within the context of Elizabethan and Jacobean drama more generally
    1. This will be tested in the exams, the Response Papers, and through participation
  3. Demonstrate awareness of some of the major themes of early modern drama (e.g. gender and sexuality, God’s providence, royal authority) and create an argument based on that awareness.
    1. This will be tested in the exams and the Response Papers.

Outline of Course:

N.B. – Please have the entire play read by the first day we take up the play in class.

Sept 7

INTRODUCTION

Edward II Sept 10

Marlovian Beginnings

5 Min Paper

Response Paper Due

Sept 12

Homosexuality in Early Modern England

Sept 14

History and Machiavelli

 

Richard II Sept 17

Shakespearean Histories

5 Min Paper

Response Paper Due

Sep 19

The Wheel of Fortune and the Divine Right of Kings

 

Sept 21

Essex Rebellion

 

Taming of the Shrew Sept 24

Domestic Comedy

5 Min Paper

Response Paper Due

Sept 26

The Discovery of the Clitoris

Sept 28

Shakespeare and Feminism

 

The Tamer Tamed Oct 1

Responses to Shakespeare

5 Min Paper

Response Paper Due

Oct 3

Lysistratan Themes

 

Oct 5

Dramaturgical Problems

 

Oct 8

THANKSGIVING

Oct 10

MIDTERM

Oct 12

OVERVIEW of Second half

 

The Spanish Tragedy Oct 15

The Revenge Tragedy

5 Min Paper

Response Paper Due

Oct 17

High Rhetoric

Oct 19

Fathers and Sons

 

Hamlet Oct 22

Why Words Matter

5 Min Paper

Response Paper Due

Oct 24

Revenge and the Law

Oct 26

Meta-Theatre and Revenge

 

The Changeling Oct 29

Camp, Theatre, and Revenge

5 Min Paper

Response Paper Due

Oct 31

What’s Up with the Subplot?

 

Nov 2

The Bed-Trick and Rape

 

Shakespeare’s Rape of Lucrece Nov 5

Translatio Imperii

5 Min Paper

Response Paper Due

Nov 7

Trauma and Internality

Nov 9

The Rape Victim’s Double Bind

 

Heywood’s Rape of Lucrece Nov 12

Heywood’s Inheritance

5 Min Paper

Response Paper Due

Nov 14

Why Does Valerius Sing?

Nov 16

The Forms of Masculinity

 

Bonduca Nov 19

Boudicca, Queen of the Iceni

5 Min Paper

Response Paper Due

Nov 21

Fletcher’s Bonduca and Gender

 

Nov 23

Bonduca and Post-Colonialism/Imperialism

 

Nov 26

Other Genres and Shakespeare’s Sources

Nov 28

Miscellany and Shakespeare in Context

Nov 29

Review for Exam

 

Description of Examinations and Major Assignments:

The final grade will be weighted as follows:

Response Paper One: 15%

The Response Papers are to be: 3-4 Pages Long.  They provide a close reading of an individual scene within the play, linking that scene to the larger themes discussed in class.  This means that you will be arguing for a position using a thesis statement and evidence regarding that particular scene, in relation to the larger themes discussed in class. The first response paper will be due before Thanksgiving, covering a single play that we discuss prior to the break.  The response papers are due the first day that we take up a play.  For example, if you choose to do a response paper on Edward II, you will have to hand it in on September 10. You must sign up for a response paper due date.  There will only be so many response papers accepted per play, in order to ensure that you can get them back in a reasonable time, with commentary.  Please use the sign up sheets on the course website to inform me as to what date you will be handing in your response paper.  Late papers will be accepted in accordance with the late policy.

Please see Grammar & Style for further instruction on the Response Papers.

Response Paper Two: 15%

The Response Papers are to be: 3-4 Pages Long.  They provide a close reading of an individual scene within the play, linking that scene to the larger themes discussed in class.  This means that you will be arguing for a position using a thesis statement and evidence regarding that particular scene, in relation to the larger themes discussed in class. The second response paper will be due after Thanksgiving, covering a single play that we discuss prior to the break.  The response papers are due the first day that we take up a play.  For example, if you choose to do a response paper on Thomas Heywood’s The Rape of Lucrece, you will have to hand it in on November 19.  You must sign up for a response paper due date.  There will only be so many response papers accepted per play, in order to ensure that you can get them back in a reasonable time, with commentary.  Please use the sign up sheets on the course website to inform me as to what date you will be handing in your response paper.  Late papers will be accepted in accordance with the late policy.

Please see Grammar & Style for further instructions on the Response Papers.

Midterm Exam: 30%

The midterm exam will be in class and consist of one (1) essay question, chosen from a bank of ten (10) questions as well as a short section of question and answer, where student’s knowledge of the history of the period, dramatic conventions, and generic issues will be tested.  You will have one (1) class period to complete the exam. Write one essay only.  The essay question bank will be handed out to students in class at least a week ahead of time.  If a student has not prearranged an alternate time to take the midterm exam and does not attend the exam during the scheduled time, they will receive a 0% on the exam.  “Prearranged” shall here be taken to mean more than 24 hours in advance, but please see “When You Cannot Meet a Course Requirement.”

Final Exam: 30%

The final exam will be REGISTRAR SCHEDULED and consist of one (1) essay question, chosen from a bank of ten (10) questions as well as a short section of question and answer, where student’s knowledge of the history of the period, dramatic conventions, and generic issues will be tested.  You will have two (2) hours to complete the exam. Write one essay only.  The essay question bank will be handed out to students in class at least a week ahead of time.

Class Participation: 10%

Participation in group and online discussions, weekly Five Minute Papers (see Below), and familiarity with the texts under question all will be a part of this grade. Class participation grade will be completely at the discretion of the instructor.

Participation: Five Minute Papers

Five minute papers will be administered at the beginning of each play we take up.  They will be short responses, either in point form or whatever form the student chooses.  These papers will ask students a question about the text or about a term of analysis that we have covered in class.  Further, these papers will ask students to come up with a question about the text at hand.  In other words, every week, as you read a new text, you must come up with a single question about the text to put into the five minute paper.  These are designed to be an informal opportunity for students to provide feedback about the course and to improve knowledge retention.  As they are informal, these papers are not subject to the same grammatical and style rules that the response papers are.

Grade Distribution:

Response Paper One:          15%
Response Paper Two:         15%
Midterm Exam:                   30%
Final Exam:                          30%
Class Participation:             10%
Total                                      100%

Grammar & Style:

As a further dimension to the response papers, each week there will be a different grammatical error whose presence in a paper will result in an instant failure for the assignment.  Please find below a list of the errors with a description of each, collated by week and text.  Any paper including an instance of the “Error of the Week” will receive an instant failure (49% – save in cases where the paper would have received less than 49% due to other considerations, in which case the lower grade will be retained).  Further, the marker will neither read past nor mark up after the point at which the grammatical error occurred.

Family of Error Due Date Response Paper For Error Description
Punctuation Sept 10 Edward II Apostrophe Misuse of apostrophes most commonly occur when creating plurals or possessives.  Be particularly mindful when creating possessives for singular proper names ending in “s,” such as “Marcus” or “James.”  MLA Handbook (7th ed) 3.2.7
Sept 17 Richard II Comma Errors There are multiple forms of comma errors other than the comma splice.  This week avoid the following:

1. Separating a verb or preposition from its object with a comma. e.g. “Shakespeare travelled, from London to Stratford.”

2. Placing a comma after a coordinating conjunction followed by an independent clause. e.g.  “Shakespeare wrote Hamlet but, he didn’t write Bonduca.”

3. Placing a comma before and after a restrictive element (a clause that changes a sentence’s basic meaning).  e.g. “The works, of Shakespeare, are more studied than those of Fletcher.”

Sept 24 Taming of the Shrew Comma Splice A comma splice is an instance where two independent clauses are joined by a comma.  For instance, “Shakespeare’s works are entertaining, they are full of engaging ideas” contains a comma splice.  The remedy? One can separate the clauses into independent sentences, subordinate one clause to the other, add an appropriate conjunction, replace the comma with a semicolon.
Oct 1 The Tamer Tamed Quotation Marks Quotation marks open and close quotations.  Sometimes students use them to give particular emphasis to certain words or concepts.  For instance, “Shakespeare was the ‘great’ writer of his day.”  Who is saying “great”?
Words, Words, Words Oct 15 The Spanish Tragedy Grievous Spelling Error This falls into two categories: common errors and specialist errors.  Common errors that are liable to result in an instant fail is the misuse of/misspelling of to/too/two or their/there.  If a student means “two” and writes “tew,” that is a failure.  Certain words in Shakespeare will not be recognized by your word processor, which can occasionally result in hilarity.  For example, “Capulet” may be autocorrected to “copulate.” MLA Handbook (7th ed) 3.1
Oct 22 Hamlet Agreement A plural subject takes a plural verb, a singular subject takes a singular verb. Nouns and pronouns must agree with each other and themselves.
Oct 29 The Changeling Word Choice (1) This is not a case where another word might be clearer or more precise.  Occasionally, a student will use a word that simply does not mean what it is being used for in the sentence.  For instance, “Hamlet transubstantiates across the stage to Gertrude.”
Nov 5 The Rape of Lucrece (Shakespeare) Word Choice (2) There is a whole class of errors that emerge from word choice.  Homonyms and functionally similar words are often the biggest culprit here.  For instance, “they’re/there/their,” “then/than,” “affect/effect,”
“among vs. between,” “whose vs. who’s,” “me vs. I.”
Style/Formatting Nov 12 The Rape of Lucrece (Heywood) Offset Quotations When quoting a section of over four lines, whether of prose or poetry, that section is to be offset, indenting one inch from the left margin, typing it double spaced, without adding quotation marks.  In cases of drama, each part of a dialogue between characters must being with the appropriate character’s name indented one inch from the left margin and written in all capital letters followed by a period (eg. HAMLET.).  MLA Handbook (7th ed) 3.7.2, 3.7.3, 3.7.4
Nov 19 Bonduca Improper Formatting

 

Text should be formatted in accordance with MLA guidelines – one inch margins all around, ½ inch from the top of each page should appear your last name and the page number, ½ inch in text indentations, double spacing throughout, etc.  MLA Handbook (7th ed) 4.1-9

 

Lateness:

An assignment is considered “late” if the student and I have not agreed beforehand to an alternate deadline to the one noted above.  Students handing in essays late will be docked 5% per calendar day until the essay is handed in or until 10 calendar days have passed, at which time the assignment will receive 0%.  For further information, see “When You Cannot Meet a Course Requirement.”

College of Arts Statement:

E-mail Communication

As per University regulations, all students are required to check their <uoguelph.ca> e-mail account regularly: e-mail is the official route of communication between the university and its students.

When You Cannot Meet a Course Requirement

When you find yourself unable to meet an in-course requirement because of illness or compassionate reasons, please advise the course instructor (or designated person, such as a teaching assistant) in writing, with your name, id#, and e-mail contact. See the Undergraduate Calendar for information on regulations and procedures for Academic Consideration:

http://www.uoguelph.ca/registrar/calendars/undergraduate/current/c08/c08-ac.shtml

Drop Date

The last date to drop one-semester Fall 2012 courses, without academic penalty, is Thursday November 1.  For regulations and procedures for Dropping Courses, see the Undergraduate Calendar: http://www.uoguelph.ca/registrar/calendars/undergraduate/current/c08/c08-drop.shtml

Copies of out-of-class assignments

Keep paper and/or other reliable back-up copies of all out-of-class assignments: you may be asked to resubmit work at any time.

Student Rights and Responsibilities

Each student at the University of Guelph has rights which carry commensurate responsibilities that involve, broadly, being a civil and respectful member of the University community.  The Rights and Responsibilities are detailed in the Undergraduate Calendar: http://www.uoguelph.ca/registrar/calendars/undergraduate/current/c14/c14-strightsrespon.shtml

Academic Misconduct

The University of Guelph is committed to upholding the highest standards of academic integrity and enjoins all members of the University community – faculty, staff, and students – to be aware of what constitutes academic misconduct and to do as much as possible to prevent academic offences from occurring.  The Academic Misconduct Policy is detailed in the Undergraduate Calendar:

http://www.uoguelph.ca/registrar/calendars/undergraduate/current/c08/c08-amisconduct.shtml

Recording of Materials

Presentations which are made in relation to course work—including lectures—cannot be recorded in any electronic media without the permission of the presenter, whether the instructor, a classmate or guest lecturer.

Resources

The Undergraduate Calendar is the source of information about the University of Guelph’s procedures, policies and regulations which apply to undergraduate programs.  It can be found at:

http://www.uoguelph.ca/registrar/calendars/undergraduate/current/

If you find yourself in difficulty, contact the undergraduate advisor in your program, or the BA Counselling Office: http://www.uoguelph.ca/baco/contact.shtml