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Module

SEL3393 : Shakespeare's Show Business

  • Offered for Year: 2020/21
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Kate De Rycker
  • Owning School: English Lit, Language & Linguistics
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semesters
Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0

Aims

In this course we will be dismantling the canonical status of William Shakespeare by examining his work and reputation in its original, collaborative, context. We will start by looking at the booming 'entertainment industry' that Shakespeare joined when he moved to London: how did collaborating with specific actors and writers shape his work? How did the theatre industry compete with the popularity of printed romance, a genre aimed at women readers? We’ll then move on to look at the way in which print was used to turn writers into celebrities, resulting in the ultimate mythologising of Shakespeare's natural genius. Throughout, we’ll be using digital resources to explore the material history of the early modern stage and page.

Outline Of Syllabus

This course is divided into 2 sections: ‘stage collaborators/competitors’ and ‘printing the Author’. In the first section we will look at the way collaboration in the Elizabethan theatre industry shaped plays we today tend to think of as singularly ‘Shakespearean’. We will think about the way rivalry and collaboration sparked innovation, and explore how representations of gender transform when printed romance (which both represents and was aimed at women) was adapted to the stage. In the second section we will move our focus onto the printing house by looking at the role that print played in constructing and publicising the idea of a 'celebrity' Author, and how we might uncover the work of silent female mediators in this process. Authors studied on this course typically include William Shakespeare, Christopher Marlowe, Mary Sidney, and Margaret Tyler.

Teaching Methods

Module leaders are revising this content in light of the Covid 19 restrictions.
Revised and approved detail information will be available by 17 August.

Assessment Methods

Module leaders are revising this content in light of the Covid 19 restrictions.
Revised and approved detail information will be available by 17 August.

Reading Lists

Timetable