Arden Student Skills: Language and Writing

Plays

Antony and Cleopatra: Language and Writing

Bloomsbury Publishing

Reading Antony and Cleopatra is particularly challenging because of Shakespeare's masterful embodiment of Rome and Egypt's contrasting worlds in language, structure, and characterization.

Instead of seeing the interaction of Roman and Egyptian perspectives in Antony and Cleopatra as a type of double image of reality that changes as one moves from one location to another, students often find themselves compelled to pick sides. The more romantic opt for Cleopatra as the most sympathetic character, while the pragmatists dismiss her lifestyle as self-indulgent. The central challenge in reading this play, in other words, is to resist the compulsion to take sides and, instead, to adopt a 'both-and' point of view rather than an 'either-or' choice. The play's central binary - Rome vs. Egypt - is deeply embedded in its language and structure, yet the play consistently complicates our view of either side.

This book encourages students to think outside the binary box, to understand, and to celebrate, Shakespeare's exploitation of the multivalent nature of language. As well as helping students to analyse the intricacy of Shakespeare's language in Antony and Cleopatra, each chapter's 'Writing matters' section enables students to develop their own writing strategies in coursework and examinations.

Hamlet: Language and Writing

Bloomsbury Publishing

This lively and informative guide reveals Hamlet as marking a turning point in Shakespeare's use of language and dramatic form as well as addressing the key problem at the play's core: Hamlet's inaction. It also looks at recent critical approaches to the play and its theatre history, including the recent David Tennant / RSC Hamlet on both stage and TV screen.

King Richard III: Language and Writing

Bloomsbury Publishing

A new type of study aid which combines lively critical insight with practical guidance on the critical writings skills students need to develop in order to engage fully with Shakespeare's texts. The book's core focus is on language: both understanding and enjoying Shakespeare's complex dramatic language, and expanding the student's own critical vocabulary as they respond to the play.

The book explores several different approaches to Shakespeare's language. It looks at how the subtleties of Shakespeare's language reveal the thought processes and motivations of his characters, often in ways those characters themselves don't recognise; it analyses how Shakespeare's language works within or sometimes against various historical contexts, the contexts of stage performance, of genre and of discourses of his day (of religion, law, commerce, and friendship); and it explores how the peculiarities of Shakespeare's language often point to broad issues, themes, or ways of thinking that transcend any one character or line of action. Each chapter includes a "Writing Matters" section, giving students ideas and guidance for building their own critical response to the play and the skills to articulate it with confidence.

Macbeth: Language and Writing

Bloomsbury Publishing

Arden Student Guides: Language and Writing offer a new type of study aid which combines lively critical insight with practical guidance on the critical writing skills you need to develop in order to engage fully with Shakespeare's texts. The books' core focus is on language: both understanding and enjoying Shakespeare's complex dramatic language, and expanding your own critical vocabulary, as you respond to his plays.

Key features include:

an introduction considering when and how the play was written, addressing the language with which Shakespeare created his work, as well as the generic, literary and theatrical conventions at his disposal

detailed examination and analysis of the individual text, focusing on its literary, technical and historical intricacies

discussion of performance history and the critical reception of the work

a 'Writing matters' section in every chapter, clearly linking the analysis of Shakespeare's language to your own writing strategies in coursework and examinations.

Written by world-class academics with both scholarly insight and outstanding teaching skills, each guide will empower you to read and write about Shakespeare with increased confidence and enthusiasm.

At a climactic point in the play, Macbeth realises that the witches have deceived him through their ambiguous language: 'they palter with us in a double sense'. This book explores Shakespeare's own paltering in the play – the densely rich language of ambition, of blood, and of guilt that structures Macbeth.

Much Ado About Nothing: Language and Writing

Bloomsbury Publishing

Much Ado About Nothing presents a world of glittering surfaces and exquisite social performances. The language of the play sparkles with a fireworks of wit and dazzling bouts of repartee, most memorably in the "merry war" of words between the reluctant lovers, Benedick and Beatrice. A closer look at the language of the play, however, reveals it to be laced with violence and charged with the desire to humiliate others. Wit is deployed as a weapon to ridicule one's opponent; much of the humour circulates incessantly around the theme of cuckoldry, a major source of male anxiety in the period. The most drastic use of language is to slander Hero by accusing her of a lack of chastity - an accusation that spelt social death for a woman in the early modern age. The death that Hero feigns mirrors accurately the devastating effects of the assassination of her character by the smart set of young noblemen in the play.

This study guide focuses on examining the array of the uses of language that the play displays, and probes into the ideas about language that it explores. The book looks at key film versions of the play by Kenneth Branagh and Joss Whedon which are often used on courses, whilst also offering practical questions and tips to help students develop their own critical writing skills and deepen their understanding of the play.

Othello: Language and Writing

Bloomsbury Publishing

In this volume on Othello, Laurie Maguire examines the use and misuse of language, the play's textual and performance histories and how critics and directors have responded to the language of sexual jealousy.

Readers should write immediately to Bloomsbury for an examination copy of this book. Many will want to adopt it in their courses, and everybody, to judge from my experience, will derive great quantities of pleasure and profit from reading it. The Shakespeare Newsletter

Romeo and Juliet: Language and Writing

Bloomsbury Publishing

Everyone knows the story of the star-crossed lovers but close attention to the language of the play can deepen and darken the legend. As icons of passion, Romeo and Juliet reveal the recklessness, as well as the idealism, of desire in a violent world. Catherine Belsey shows how you can tease out the play's subtle meanings and goes on to discuss key adaptations, including the classic Baz Lurhmann film.

The Tempest: Language and Writing

Bloomsbury Publishing

Arden Student Guides: Language and Writing offer a new type of study aid which combines lively critical insight with practical guidance on the critical writing skills you need to develop in order to engage fully with Shakespeare's texts. The books' core focus is on language: both understanding and enjoying Shakespeare's complex dramatic language, and expanding your own critical vocabulary, as you respond to his plays.

Key features include:

• an introduction considering when and how the play was written, addressing the language with which Shakespeare created his work, as well as the generic, literary and theatrical conventions at his disposal

• detailed examination and analysis of the individual text, focusing on its literary, technical and historical intricacies

• discussion of performance history and the critical reception of the work

• a 'Writing matters' section in every chapter, clearly linking the analysis of Shakespeare's language to your own writing strategies in coursework and examinations

Written by world-class academics with both scholarly insight and outstanding teaching skills, each guide will empower you to read and write about Shakespeare with increased confidence and enthusiasm.

Shakespeare's The Tempest is among the most widely-admired works of literature. More than any other Shakespeare play, it has lent itself to rewriting and is among the most 'metadramatic' of Shakespeare's works, pondering the value of creating worlds with words.

Twelfth Night: Language and Writing

Bloomsbury Publishing

Frances E. Dolan examines the puzzling pronouns and puns, the love poetry, mischief, and disguises of Twelfth Night, exploring its themes of grief, obsessive love, social climbing and gender identity, and helping you towards your own close-readings.

Arden Student Skills: Language and Writing offer a new type of study aid which combines lively critical insight with practical guidance on the critical writing skills you need to develop in order to engage fully with Shakespeare's texts.

The series' core focus is language: both understanding and enjoying Shakespeare's complex dramatic language, and expanding your own critical vocabulary, as you respond to his plays.

Key features include:

- an introduction considering when and how the play was written, addressing the language with which Shakespeare created his work, as well as the generic, literary and theatrical conventions at his disposal

- detailed examination and analysis of the individual text, focusing on its literary, technical and historical intricacies

- discussion of performance history and the critical reception of the work

- a ‘Writing matters’ section in every chapter, clearly linking the analysis of Shakespeare’s language to your own writing strategies in coursework and examinations

Written by world-class academics with both scholarly insight and outstanding teaching skills, each guide will empower you to read and write about Shakespeare with increased confidence and enthusiasm.