What you should know…

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What you should know…. What’s so great about Shakespeare?. Shakespeare is most famous for two things: 1. The emotional impact of his stories 2. His use of language to reveal character; a character’s speech SHOWS us who he/she is at the same time that it conveys a message. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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William Shakespeare

What you should know

Whats so great about Shakespeare?Shakespeare is most famous for two things: 1. The emotional impact of his stories2. His use of language to reveal character; a characters speech SHOWS us who he/she is at the same time that it conveys a message

Whats so great about Shakespeare?Though he borrowed almost all of his plots from other writers (of his 38 plays, only Loves Labor Lost and The Tempest appear to be originals), he made these stories often more popular than their originals because:

He showed characters with complex motivations and rich, contradictory psychological profiles.He makes his characters seem real.

When Romeo meets JulietWhats so great about Shakespeare?When looking at the text, two things that youll notice are that: Shakespeares writing is mostly dialogue.Shakespeares writing is mostly poetry.

Paraphrase: Cassius talks with Brutus comparing Caesars growing power to that of the god/statue of Colossus. He uses simile, metaphor and imagery to convey his point. CASSIUS Why, man, he doth bestride the narrow worldLike a Colossus, and we petty menWalk under his huge legs and peep aboutTo find ourselves dishonorable graves.Men at some time are masters of their fates.The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our starsBut in ourselves, that we are underlings.

Shakespeares LanguageGlobe attendees had advantages over us when it came to understanding his plays. The advantages were: Shared culture (would know allusions, local references, dialects of people from different backgrounds, nationalities and social classes.) Seeing it performed liveUnderstanding the flexibility of theearly modern English language

The Globe TheatreShakespeares Language If you dont understand some of the language, dont feel bad: taken together, SSs works contain over __25,000__ different words, when the average vocab of a SS theater-goer was only 800 words. Shakespeare is known for: coining phrases and making up words.

Shakespeares LanguageEven if you dont understand the language, pay attention to the WAY a character speaks, as it reveals details about: Their social classPersonalityMoodCurrent Situation

Prince Hamlet in his famous To Be or Not to Be speechShakespeares LanguageFor example, does the character speak in Prose or Verse?Poetry(whether rhymed for unrhymed) is more formal and highbrow than prose, so it would be spoken by a gentleman or king, NOT by a commoner.Formal speeches/announcements tended to be written in verse. Characters in an agitated state also used verse in order to convey _a strong emotion_.

Antony speaks to the plebians at Caesars funeral. Antonys speech is in verse while the plebians respond to him in prose. Shakespeares LanguageSometimes its not what they say but how long they take to say it. Long-winded characters tend to have extreme personalities. Characters with a lot of lines tend to be very smart, though they may use that intelligence in different ways.

Hamlet pretends to be crazy to discover the truth about his dads death.Iago cleverly poisons Othellos mind against his wife Desdemona.Viola disguises herself as a boy to raise her position in society.Shakespeares LanguagePowerful, mystical, or insane figures will sometimes speak in riddles, rhymes, or songs.

Shakespeares LanguageHe frequently uses metaphors and figurative language, including personification, as well as puns (plays on words) in order to add layers of meaning to his dialogue. For example, when Mercutio is dying of a stab wound, he tells his friends, Ask for me tomorrow, and you shall find me a grave man. Grave in this sense refers to both a serious state and death.

How to read ShakespeareAll of Shakespeares plays are written in blank verse. Following the punctuation is always important when studying Shakespeare. Lines that are end-stopped, end with punctuation mark; whereas lines that do not end with punctuation are run-on. Archaic words are those that are no longer in use. The most troublesome words are those that are still in use but have different meanings. Plays are created for an audience. So it is important to read the play aloud.