Screening Shakespeare

THREE TUESDAYS, APRIL 2, 9, AND 16, 6:00–7:30 P.M.






Shakespeare seems to be everywhere: on stages and on pages but also, as frequently, on screens. On silent screens and silver screens of old, but also on television screens, live-streams, YouTube, Tik Tok, and the ever-tinier confines of a mobile device. How do we account for 125 years of Shakespeare onscreen, from the silent era to the present? What happens when works designed for live theater over four hundred years ago are translated to an entirely different time, medium, and context? What are the obligations of and the opportunities for a director remaking Shakespeare? How do sonnets become movies?

Over three sessions we will consider these questions and more with Joseph Campana of Rice University. We will look first, broadly, at the evolution of Shakespeare on screen before focusing more closely on multiple versions of frequently adapted works like Macbeth, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Romeo and Juliet. Joseph Campana is the William Shakespeare Professor of English and the Director for the Center for Environmental Studies at Rice University. He is a poet, arts writer, and scholar of Renaissance literature and has composed essays on Spenser, Shakespeare, Nashe, Defoe, and Middleton. Professor Campana is the author of The Pain of Reformation: Spenser, Vulnerability, and the Ethics of Masculinity (Fordham UP, 2012) and has written three collections of poetry.


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