Understanding A Midsummer Night's Dream: A Student Casebook to Issues, Sources, and Historical Documents

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Greenwood Publishing Group, 2003 - Literary Criticism - 197 pages


This casebook begins by establishing the dramatic and literary concerns of the play, such as structure, themes, poetic language, and original sources and classical inspiration. Four historical context chapters consider attitudes toward gender relations, social distinctions, popular culture, and imagination in Shakespeare's time, revealing contemporary social and political issues and debates reflected in the comedy.

One of Shakespeare's most delightful plays, A Midsummer Night's Dream enchants audiences and readers with its celebration of magic, dreams, and love. This casebook begins by establishing the dramatic and literary concerns of the play. Four historical context chapters consider attitudes toward gender relations, social distinctions, popular culture, and imagination in Shakespeare's time, revealing contemporary issues and debates reflected in the comedy.

Each unit is supported by primary historical documents, including pamphlets and proclamations. A discussion of performance and interpretation focuses on how the play's popularity and perspectives have evolved over the centuries, and thematic connections to modern influences like sitcoms and Freudian dream analysis show how the play is pertinent to young readers. Numerous ideas for written assignments and oral discussions are offered, along with further suggested readings.

 

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Contents

I
1
II
21
III
33
IV
35
V
37
VI
39
VIII
41
IX
47
XXXIX
136
XL
137
XLI
138
XLIV
140
XLV
141
XLVI
147
XLVII
150
XLVIII
152

X
55
XI
58
XII
62
XVII
69
XVIII
81
XX
84
XXI
85
XXII
89
XXIV
91
XXV
92
XXVI
97
XXVII
106
XXVIII
108
XXIX
110
XXXII
111
XXXIII
112
XXXIV
116
XXXV
119
XXXVI
125
XXXVII
133
XXXVIII
134
XLIX
153
L
154
LI
155
LII
156
LIII
161
LIV
162
LV
163
LVI
164
LVIII
165
LIX
168
LXI
169
LXII
175
LXIII
176
LXV
177
LXVI
178
LXVII
179
LXVIII
180
LXIX
183
LXXI
184
Copyright

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About the author (2003)

FAITH NOSTBAKKEN has taught at the University of Alberta, Canada. Her research focuses on Shakespeare and Renaissance drama, particularly the historical contexts. She is the author of two other books in Greenwood's Literature in Context series, Understanding Macbeth: A Student Casebook to Issues, Sources, and Historical Documents (1997) and Understanding Othello (2000).

Bibliographic information