course examined the Ancient Roman history and mythology behind
the four stories used by Shakespeare, the transmission of those stories
to the time of Shakespeare, how Shakespeare molded the stories for his
late 16th and early 17th century royal and public audiences, and how
Shakepeare's four Roman plays are staged (and made into movies/TV
productions) in our own time.
the four units in this course consists of two three-hour
during the first of which we view a video of the
during the second of which we examine a play's
transmition, early productions and reception, and modern productions
up the four plays in the order that their stories fit
chronologically into Ancient Roman history: Coriolanus -- very
early Republic, ca. 500 BC; Julius Caesar -- 44 BC to 39
BC; Antony and Cleopatra -- immediately following Julius Caesar;
and Titus Andronicus, at an unspecified time late in the Roman
Republic. (They were not written in that order: Titus was
written first in 1593; Julius Caesar in 1599; Antony and
Cleopatra in 1606; and Coriolanus in 1607.)
textbook are necessary for this course, but you may want to
familiarize yourselves with the four plays, either by reading them or
by watching them live or on video.
information on the four plays can be found here.