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Posts Tagged ‘Shakespeare’

My prof is trying new forms of teaching with us this semester. So for part of our grade we have to take part in a workshop and then write a paper based on our experiences. I’m doing the first one for feedback as I have no idea what is expected.

This is my first experiment:

Workshop Paper: The Revenger’s Tragedy

It is interesting working with a group where one has to make their own parameters and decide for themselves what to discuss. When I first envisioned working with a group of my peers I was a little fearful of how it would go without the guide of the professor. However, it was much more than I envisioned and it was an enjoyable experience. In order to decide what what to focus the discussion on, we as a group asked what figured most prominently in our plans as we prepared for the discussion. We choose to work with Vindice as he was in the majority of the questions posed concerning The Revenger’s Tragedy.
During the workshop we specifically discussed Vindice’s disguises and mapped his progress throughout the play, The Revenger’s Tragedy. In the play Vindice takes on various disguises to serve his purposes of exacting revenge on the Duke for killing Gloriana whom he loved. The original question posed was “why did Vindice originally disguise himself?” It was concluded that the only reason he needed a disguise was to separate himself from his plans. He needed to think that he was innocent in his plan for revenge against the Duke, that it was morally permitted and that it was Piato (his disguise) not himself who murdered the Duke. No one would have recognized Vindice without his disguise because he had been away from court for long. Act three, Scene five is Vindice’s turning point where he completely looses himself to the pleasure he feels at the murder of the Duke. He prolongs the Duke’s death taunting him and finally revealing himself for who he really is, though he has still convinced himself that it is Piato who is acting, not himself. It is not till the end of Act five where he confesses his acts to Antonio, that he truly realizes that his acts put him in opposition of the Great Chain of Being and thus the order prescribed for humanity has been set upside down. Instead of going through the proper processes for justice, he instead decides whom shall live and whom shall die. It it because Vindice realizes this that he accepts his death from Antonio. He resumes his proper place in the order of the Great Chain of being.
As a group we began with Act One Scene One and discussed together of what we thought concerning Vindice/Piato’s transitions. No one assumed the role of a leader and we all worked together putting forth thoughts as they came. I think that it would have worked better if someone had been appointed as a “leader” to keep track of the time and to make sure that the discussion did not veer off too much. If there had been more time I do not think that would have mattered as much, however, we chose a rather broad topic though at first it did not seem like it was. We did work well as a team and there were few if not any silences where one did not have anything to offer to the discussion. It would be nice to work with the same group again to see what further connections and conclusions could be drawn as we would know each other’s styles better. Overall it was a rather positive experience which I would like to try again, not only in this class, but others as it can and does provide positive results where one needs to analyze the text themselves and come up with their own conclusions.

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I wish one could answer with more than a page for “discussion” questions. I think I hit a great one for Measure for Measure, and once I get into it I know that I could go on for a few pages.  I’m kinda excited about the question I came up with:

In Measure for Measure, gender identities and sexual relationships are explored within the context of morality and society in the Renaissance period.  The play’s central point is the idea of marriage contracts and sexual intercourse within the confines of an engagement and marriage.  Within the play, Claudio is sentenced to execution for impregnating his fiance, Julietta, and Angelo, is set up with Mariana, whom he had broken off the engagement with because of her lack of dowry.  How does Isabella define the role of women as wives and as antonymous individuals?

I still have to refine it so as to connect Isabella to Claudio, Julietta and Angelo.  But I really like it.  I think that one could go in so many different directions with it.  However, time for me to actually go and answer it now 🙂  Have a great night all!

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So Brandon is going to quit his job and look for a new one.  I’m hoping and praying that he finds one suitable for his talents and for our accounts.  It’s so stressful knowing that you do DO a good job, that you get told so by customers and your managers and coworkers, but get no hours.  One thing I hate about managers is that they’re two faced and it seems that a lot of them are.  They’ll say one thing, but do another and you never know where you stand, if you’re as good as they say you are, or if they really just want you to quit.  I’m hoping that this year is better than this January.  I’m going to have to seriously look at our expenses and decide where I can save money food wise etc.

But let’s not dwell on that.  I’m starting The Revenger’s Tragedy by Tourner today for my Renaissance Literature class.  I’ll be honest and admit that the only plays I’ve read from this period are Dr. Faustus and The Alchemist and a myriad of Shakespeare’s plays.  So it will be interesting trying to interpret this play without the foundation I’ve been given through work in High School and whathaveyou.  And weirdly, I’m a little excited for it.  I’m glad that I get to expand my knowledge of Renaissance period literature and I’m excited to see how other authors other than Shakespeare dealt with issues such as class struggle, the rise of the middling classes, gender roles etc.  Tourner will have a completely different point of view.

Oh and can I just say that I LOVE Bob Schneider’s song “Flowerparts” off his album The Californian.  I suggest that if you haven’t heard it, look it up on Youtube or something similar.  I think we could all learn something from it.

But don’t forget the flowerparts…
A soft touch and an open heart.
A rainbow and some empathy.
Compassion and sympathy.

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Shakespeare.  I have the opportunity to bask in the awesomeness that is Shakespeare this semester.  My two English courses are both Renaissance Lit, one of which is strictly Shakespeare, and the other is a period lit class, composed mainly of plays like Titus Andronicus (Shakespeare) etc.

In the former class, we are currently covering A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Personally, I’ve never read the play previously, however, I’ve heard much about it.  Most people consider it one of the best comedies that Shakespeare has written, next to those like Much Ado About Nothing.  We’ve only had one class on it, and I’m pretty stoked for the rest of the semester.  At one point we’ll get to form groups and produce a scene from one of the plays that we’ll be covering.  I have so many ideas swirling around my head that I’m pretty stoked. LOL.  It also helps that my prof is fairly awesome, she knows how to manage the class and has so many insights and ideas on how to improve it.  Also, he specialty happens to be Shakespeare, so it’s not like past classes that I’ve had with other profs who were learning along with the rest of the students.  Anyway, I’m looking forward to every class which is new.  So boo ya!

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