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Unit 3a:
Shakespeare in context
Much Ado About Nothing…read more

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Drama - the genre
Historical Overview
Earliest English plays were from the
Middle Ages
Performed in open air - no theatres
Mystery plays - Bible stories
15th & 16th Century - Morality plays.
Used allegory to deliver moral lessons
First theatre built in England in 1576…read more

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Drama - the genre
Historical Overview
Elizabethan and Jacobean drama - `golden
age' of English drama
Plays of this period were written during
reigns of Elizabeth 1(1558-1603) and James
1(1603-1625)
Famous playwrights of this era include
Shakespeare, Christopher Marlowe, Ben
Jonson and John Webster
Themes of their plays are society and the
human condition, addressing issues of
morality, justice, political discord, social
corruption and also individual human tragedy…read more

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Drama - the genre
Historical Overview
Restoration comedy - next important phase
in history of English drama, after restoration
of Charles 11 in 1660.
Main themes are marriage, sexual desire
and infidelity
19th century drama - addresses
contemporary social and political issues
(Founder: Norwegian Henrik Ibsen)
Modern drama - main trend to reject
conventional attitudes and belief, mirrored in
abandonment of traditional dramatic forms
and conventions…read more

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Shakespeare in context
Read the handout, `Shakespeare in
context' and the poster, `The
Shakespearian Theatre' and complete
the questions
Be ready to discuss what you have
learnt…read more

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