English 223us. Unfamiliar Shakespeare

Instructor: Marjorie Garber
Terms: Spring Term

Tuesdays, 12-2 pm | Location: Barker 269


What could be unfamiliar about Shakespeare, the dramatist whose works, are benchmark of literary quality and human wisdom, an author whose name is synonymous with “greatness” and whose words are quoted, and misquoted,  every day? This seminar will approach the idea of “unfamiliar Shakespeare” in three ways: 1) by looking at plays that are not part of the usual classroom canon, like the Henry VI plays, King John, Timon of Athens and Henry VIII, as well as poems like “Venus and Adonis,” “The Rape of Lucrece,”  and “The Phoenix and the Turtle.”; 2) concurrently, by considering theoretical concepts (“defamiliarization,” “the uncanny,” “différance,” “the alienation effect,” etc.) in their relationship to Shakespeare; and 3) by discussing trends in recent production, like cross-casting, temporal displacement and immersive theater.

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